KSA Shark ©

Smith leads Cheetahs into the fray

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :Cheetahs, In the news, Super 14 on 20 Jan 2009 at 12:28
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Springbok stalwart Juan Smith will lead the Cheetahs when they take on Griquas in their first Super 14 pre-season match at Grey College on Friday.

Rugby 365 reports that the Cheetahs coaching panel decided on naming the Bok flank in the starting XV, despite medical opinion – which suggested that he should be reintroduced “gradually” to contact, with a “high level of vigilance” for any symptoms of concussion.

It was expected that Smith, who suffered concussion in South Africa’s Test against Scotland in November and missed all of the pre-season workouts in December, would only return in the second pre-season friendly against the Bulls in Polokwane at the end of the month.

However, the Cheetahs coaches felt it necessary to name their best XV for the outing against Griquas.

Although the Cheetahs played an internal trial last Friday – where the Super 14 squad’s back-up players faced the Free State Vodacom Cup side – and there is still the trip to Polokwane to face the Bulls on January 30, the Griquas game forms an important part of the team’s preparations.

The selections are a significant indicator of what the Cheetahs’ starting XV will look like when the competition proper gets underway next month.

Hennie Daniller has stolen the march on Springbok Bevin Fortuin for the fullback spot – although the latter remains in the wider Super 14 squad.

With injured Springbok flyer Jongi Nokwe only expected to return to training later this week, Danwel Demas and Fabian Juries are starting on the wings.

Import Corné Uys and Jacques-Louis Potgieter, a regular at flyhalf last year, will be in the centres. Springbok Meyer Bosman has moved to a more permanent position at flyhalf, after spending much of the past few years in the midfield, while his halfback partner will be Tewis de Bruyn, another player who has spent a considerable amount of time in the No.10 jersey last year.

The loose trio is an impressive unit – Frans Viljoen at No.8, along with two Bok flanks – Smith and Heinrich Brüssow.

At lock the Cheetahs look a touch thin, although David de Villiers and Nico Breedt are both seasoned campaigners. Kobus Calldo, Adriaan Strauss and Wian du Preez are the regular starting front row trio.

The Cheetahs’ backline coach, Hawies Fourie, said they have specific goals for Friday’s game – particularly in the backline – which looks much different from that which featured for the Cheetahs in the Super 14 and Currie Cup last year.

“We want to work through our attacking systems and see what we have to work on,” Fourie told rugby365.com.

“There are many things to work on – your kicking game is important and we must get that up to par.

“There is also our defence. We have worked hard on our defence, but you only really get tested when you play,” he said, adding that Griquas have a really good Vodacom Cup team and won’t be a walkover.

* Meanwhile it was confirmed that prop Coenie Oosthuizen, who injured his shoulder in last Friday’s trial game, will undergo surgery this week. That will most likely rule him out for the rest of the season.

Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Danwel Demas, 13 Corné Uys, 12 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 11 Fabian Juries, 10 Meyer Bosman, 9 Tewis de Bruyn, 8 Frans Viljoen, 7 Juan Smith (captain), 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 David de Villiers, 4 Nico Breedt, 3 Kobus Calldo, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Wian du Preez.
Replacements – from: Richardt Strauss, Jean Botha, Wayne van Heerden, Hendro Scholtz, Sarel Pretorius, Hanno Coetzee, Piet van Zyl, Bjorn Basson

Date: Friday, January 23
Venue: Grey College, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 17.00 (13.00 GMT)


  • I’ve said it before. THIS is not a bad team but there IS a definite lack of depth in the squad.

    Then again most of the teams are up sh1t creek without a paddle if they have more than one injury in certain positions.

  • Comment 1, posted at 20.01.09 12:53:02 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 1) : I think you give them too much credit. A good/average Currie Cup side maybe. :twisted:

  • Comment 2, posted at 20.01.09 13:07:40 by McLovin Reply
    McLovinAssistant coach
  • And I hope they’re not risking One Smith’s health for a warm up game. :evil:

  • Comment 3, posted at 20.01.09 13:10:46 by McLovin Reply
    McLovinAssistant coach
  • @McLovin (Comment 3) :

    Cheetahs Medial report released yesterday.

    Dr. Ian morris, team doctor of the Vodacom Cheetahs, has kindly compiled an injury synopis on the Vodacom Cheetahs:

    Week starting 19/01/2009

    Juan Smith – Juan Smith is doing well. He is currently symptoms free. The plan of action is to reintroduce him gradually to contact rugby with a high level of vigilance for any symptoms of concussion, for which the patient has been updated. I hope that a return to rugby against the Bulls at the end of the month will be possible.

    Jongi Nokwe – A formal report has been sent. A quick update is that Jongi is doing well and is currently in rehabilitated return to rugby. I hope that by the end of the week he should be back in full training.

    Bees Roux – Dr van der Colff saw Bees this morning. Although the nasal fracture is quite severe, there is no benefit from repairing it now. It has been suggested that he continues playing and once Bees has finished with his rugby career, surgical repair of the deformity can be considered.

    Coenie OosthuizenBankardt repair to the right shoulder. Hopefully booked either for surgery this evening or later in the week. Awaiting a return phone call from Dr Greeff with regard to a surgical date.

    David de Villiers – Currently out with florid tonsillitis. He started with antibiotics one day ago. I will review the patient tomorrow. He can hopefully return to training on Thursday morning.

    Trompie Nonthinga – The patient is with a medial hamstring origin tendonitis, which fled up in the game on Friday 16/01/2009. He responded well to therapy over the weekend. He is currently pain free, but is been advised to allow the condition to settle fully prior to return. I hope that a return to training on Tuesday will be possible.

    JW Jonker – Doing well currently. Sprinting and high intensity sessions have been pain-free thus far. A full rehabilitative return is expected with the intention of playing him for about 30 mins against the bulls at the end of the month.

    Kind Regards

    Dr. Ian Morris

  • Comment 4, posted at 20.01.09 13:13:35 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @McLovin (Comment 3) :

    The Cheetahs play the Bulls on 9 May, so the “end of the month” that the Doctor is hoping for is the warm-up match against the Bulls. Someone somewhere has changed his mind for him very quickly since writing the above report.

  • Comment 5, posted at 20.01.09 13:17:00 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 5) : Seems to me like he should rather not play. Especially considering it’s just a warm up. But I suppose Naka knows best. :roll:

  • Comment 6, posted at 20.01.09 13:20:44 by McLovin Reply
    McLovinAssistant coach
  • Bees Roux – Dr van der Colff saw Bees this morning. Although the nasal fracture is quite severe, there is no benefit from repairing it now. It has been suggested that he continues playing and once Bees has finished with his rugby career, surgical repair of the deformity can be considered.

    Ja that way HE has to pay for it and not the union. :smile:

  • Comment 7, posted at 20.01.09 13:20:55 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • Met Robert Ebersohn (senter) wat hom vir eers op sewesrugby toespits en Wilton Pietersen (heelagter, knie) wat eers later in die reeks weer wedstrydfiks behoort te wees, was daar gister ook slegte nuus vir Coenie Oosthuizen (stut).

    I didn’t realise Pietersen was also out for a while?

  • Comment 8, posted at 20.01.09 13:27:14 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 7) : No benefit to Bees or the Cheetahs I wonder. :twisted:

  • Comment 9, posted at 20.01.09 13:27:21 by McLovin Reply
    McLovinAssistant coach
  • @McLovin (Comment 9) :

    Very Valid question. :lol:

  • Comment 10, posted at 20.01.09 13:38:02 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach

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