The Southern Kings have made three changes to their starting line up to face the Lions in the final promotion/relegation match at Ellis Park on Saturday. The Lions will go into the match with a 7 point lead after beating the Kings 26 – 19 at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium a week ago.
All of the three changes are amongst the backs. Scott van Breda comes in for Marcello Sampson on the right wing, with Hadleigh Parkes moving to left wing. Waylon Murray replaces Shane Gates at number 12. The last change comes in the all important pivot position, with George Whitehead replacing the injured Demetri Catrakilis. Many would probably look at Whitehead as the villain after he missed quite an easy conversion last week, but Saturday is a new game and a possible opportunity for Whitehead to return home as a hero.
Wesley Dunlop and Gates are the only changes on the bench, with Dunlop replacing Whitehead and Gates making way for Murray in the starting line up.
The Kings will have a tremendous mountain to climb, but not an impossible one; they do however need to beat the Lions with a bonus point (scoring four tries) or win by an 8 + points difference. Whichever way it goes it will be two sides playing for survival in front of a sell out crowd.
15 SP Marais 14 Scott van Breda 13 Ronnie Cooke (VC) 12 Waylon Murray 11 Hadleigh Parkes 10 George Whitehead 9 Shaun Venter 8 Jacques Engelbrecht 7 Wimpie van der Walt 6 Cornell du Preez 5 David Bulbring 4 Darron Nell (C) 3 Kevin Buys 2 Bandise Maku 1 Schalk Ferreira
16 Charl du Plessis 17 Hannes Franklin 18 Steven Sykes 19 Devin Oosthuizen 20 Nicolas Vergallo 21 Wesley Dunlop 22 Shane Gates