The first of two local games this weekend, and the first is the big one for us here at Sharksworld, as the Cheetahs host our boys in black and white in Bloemfontein.
The Cheetahs come off a narrow loss to the Stormers last weekend, giving the Cape side a hard time and in the process picking up a valuable bonus point. They have opted to play Riaan Smit ahead of Sias Ebersohn, who has been having a nightmare run of late.
The Sharks team shows few changes, with Riaan Viljoen back in Bloemfontein and hoping for a big performance against his old team. The rest of the starting team is unchanged, but look out for Willem Alberts, Jean Deysel and Ryan Kankowski off the bench.
Cheetahs: Hennie Daniller, Cameron Jacobs, Robert Ebersohn, Andries Strauss, Willie le Roux, Riaan Smit, Piet van Zyl, Philip van der Walt, Justin Downey, Heinrich Brussow, George Earle, Izak van der Westhuizen, WP Nel, Adriaan Strauss (captain), Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: Hercu Liebenberg, Trevor Nyakane, Andries Ferreira, Ashley Johnson, Tewis de Bruyn, Sias Ebersohn, Philip Snyman.
Sharks: 1. Tendai Mtawarira , 2. Bismarck du Plessis , 3. Jannie du Plessis , 4. Steven Sykes , 5. Anton Bresler , 6. Jacques Botes , 7. Marcell Coetzee , 8. Keegan Daniel (Capt) , 9. Charl McLeod , 10. Patrick Lambie , 11. Lwazi Mvovo , 12. Tim Whitehead , 13. Paul Jordaan , 14. JP Pietersen , 15. Riaan Viljoen
Replacements: , 16. Craig Burden , 17. Wiehahn Herbst , 18. Willem Alberts , 19. Jean Deysel , 20. Ryan Kankowski , 21. Frederic Michalak , 22. Meyer Bosman
Referee: Jonathan Kaplan
Assistant Ref 1:Rasta Rashivenga
Assistant Ref 2:Tiaan Jonker
TMO : Gerrie Coetzee