The Sharks aren’t the only team looking to a so-called “magician” to dig them out of a Currie Cup hole this season. While the Durban crew will need to wait a week longer for their wizard to arrive, Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské has included his at inside centre for this weekend’s crunch game against the Lions.
Baby Bok skipper “Magic” Rob Ebersohn has been named at inside center in the place of the injured Meyer Bosman. The youngster’s signature is being courted as far afield as Durban and Cape Town, but it appears that, for now at least, the sevens star’s future lies in Bloemfontein. Drotské will look to the youngster to add a little attacking flair to an otherwise pedestrian set of backs that struggled against Griqaus in their opening fixture.
Other changes to the side see Bok cast-off Jongi Nokwe reinstated at left wing, while former Griquas scrumhalf Tertius Carse gets an opportunity to start ahead of Gerrie Odendaal. The latter will need to pull up his socks, lest he lose his place in the Cheetahs 22 to former Bulls journeyman JP Joubert, who has joined Free State for the remainder of the Currie Cup season. At best a fourth choice scrumhalf in Pretoria, Joubert was released by the Blue Bulls union earlier this week.
Free State Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Danwel Demas, 13 Corné Uys, 12 Robert Ebersohn, 11 Jongi Nokwe, 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9 Tertius Carse, 8 Francois Uys, 7 Hendro Scholtz (captain), 6 Johan Wessels, 5 David de Villiers, 4 Nico Breedt, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Wian du Preez.
Replacements: 16 Richardt Strauss, 17 Coenie Oosthuizen, 18 Frans Viljoen, 19 Kabamba Floors, 20 Gerrie Odendaal, 21 Louis Strydom, 22 JW Jonker.