John Plumtree hsa named arguably his strongest available line-up to face the Lions in Johannesburg this weekend.
Recently-released Springboks Craig Burden and Lwazi Mvovo have been included in the starting lineup, as expected; Burden comes in for Pieter Dixon, but to Plumtree’s credit, he has persisted with young Monde Hadebe on the bench, opting to leave the veteran out of the 22 altogether this week. Mvovo takes over from Roso Speckman, who we reported earlier today will join up with College Rovers at the national club championships. S’bura Sithole thus retains his bench spot.
Steven Sykes returns at lock, in a move we didn’t anticipate, with Jandre Marais thus replacing his brother Peet on the bench. The only other change to the match 22 this week sees Paul Jordaan included as backline replacement ahead of Marius Joubert; Cobus Reinach, in a key move, starts again at scrumhalf ahead of Charl McLeod.
The Sharks haven’t won a match at Coca-Cola Park since 2010, making this game a really big challenge for them.
15. Louis Ludik, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. Tim Whitehead, 12. Meyer Bosman, 11. Lwazi Mvovo, 10. Riaan Viljoen, 9. Cobus Reinach, 8. Keegan Daniel (Capt), 7. Jean Deysel , 6. Jacques Botes, 5. Anton Bresler, 4. Steven Sykes, 3. Wiehahn Herbst, 2. Craig Burden, 1. Dale Chadwick
16 Monde Hadebe, 17 Julian Redelinghuys, 18 Jandre Marais, 19 Brynard Stander, 20 Charl McLeod, 21 Paul Jordaan, 22 Sibusiso Sithole