Lions back youth for Sharks encounter

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Lions, Original Content, Super Rugby on 6 Feb 2014 at 14:39
Tagged with : , , , ,

Sharks coach Jake White will be left scratching his head a little, after Lions counterpart Johan Ackermann has named a makeshift side unlikely to present the sort of opposition that White would have wanted for Friday night’s warm up game.

You can understand Ackermann’s reticence to send his first-choice side into a full-blooded encounter against the Sharks. His squad doesn’t boast the depth that he’d like and having already lost two frontline players after last weekend’s game against the Kings, there’s simply no incentive for him to risk further injuries to his key men.

Ackermann’s 26-man squad will be led by veteran centre Alwyn Hollenbach, picked in the number 12 jersey, but won’t feature any of Lionel Mapoe, Marnitz Boshoff, Michael Bondesio, Derick Minnie, Jaco Kriel, Franco van der Merwe or Julian Redelinghuys. All of the aforementioned players are expected to be certain starters for the season opener against the cheetahs a week later.

Former Sharks age-group flyhalf Willie du Plessis will run the show from the number 10 jersey, while Bees Roux, Willie Wepener, Martin Muller and Willie Britz are the more recognisable names in a rather unknown pack of forwards.

15. Coenie van Wyk, 14. Deon van Rensburg , 13. Stokkies Hanekom , 12. Alwyn Hollenbach (captain), 11. Chrysander Botha , 10. Wilie du Plessis, 9. Faf de Klerk, 8. Willie Britz, 7. Ruaan Lerm, 6. Warwick Tecklenburg, 5. Martin Muller, 4. Lourens Erasmus, 3. Bees Roux, 2. Willie Wepener, 1. Jacques van Rooyen

Substitutes: 16. Malcolm Marx, 17.Charles Marais, 18. Corne Fourie, 19. Stephan Vermeulen, 20. Hugo Kloppers, 21. MB Lusaseni, 22. Stephan de Witt, 23. Ross Cronje, 24. JW Jonker, 25. Ruan Combrinck, 26. Deon Helberg


  • was very tough not to use a more damning headline…

  • Comment 1, posted at 06.02.14 14:41:40 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Very smart Mr Ackermann, very smart. He gives most of his second stringers game time against a very good side thus making sure the little depth he has is sharp. He isnt expected to get a good result so a win or anything close is a massive morale boost to his side and squad. A Sharks win is expected so his squad wont get demoralised by a loss. He has still named a decent backline but well played Mr Ackermann, very smart.

  • Comment 2, posted at 06.02.14 14:45:06 by SheldonK Reply

  • Shame, you really can understand why Ackers has done this. The lions squad doesn’t go deep enough to risk injury a week out from the comp.

    Still it wont be too bad a warm up.

    Surely that centre combo is big and strong enough to give ours a good go. Those wingers are big and strong too.
    Loosies are pretty good as well.

    We must just use the opportunities to really just work on what has practised so far, strategies and set pieces etc.
    Even if we don’t run away with it, itll still be a good hit out Im sure.

  • Comment 3, posted at 06.02.14 14:48:16 by John Galt Reply

    John Galt
  • Im not sure these warmups are a good idea. The Super Rugby season is long and arduous.

    I feel its a case of a trade off of a)play these warm up games, risk injury to players, start the competition firing on all cylinders and burn out in the second half of the comp, or b)not play these games, enter undercooked, risking the first few games, but then finding rhythm later on in the comp…Who can say whats really better? Guess it depends on what your draw looks like.

  • Comment 4, posted at 06.02.14 15:05:56 by Talent Reply
  • @Talent (Comment 4) : Rugby is a full contact sport at speed- injuries are going to happen no matter when. So rather play the warm ups so majority of the side can get into it and adapt game plans etc. Coaches need to adapt to injuries and prepare for them. Any coach who thinks he will get by injury free should rather coach tennis. So i reckon play good , hard warm ups and keep that squad rotating

  • Comment 5, posted at 06.02.14 15:09:33 by SheldonK Reply

  • @John Galt (Comment 3) : Which Chrysander Botha do you know that is big and strong?

  • Comment 6, posted at 06.02.14 15:11:01 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @SheldonK (Comment 5) : I was talking more along the lines of player fatigue and burn out. Anyway that’s a fairly cavalier way to approach professional sport.

    Hasn’t Tim Noakes cautioned about the amount of games players are playing? Aren’t most injuries over use injuries or recurring?

  • Comment 7, posted at 06.02.14 15:18:29 by Talent Reply
  • Thanks for the background info on Willie du Plessis, I knew I recognised the name but couldn’t quite remember from where.

    Ons has to wonder whether Johan Ackerman risks a slightly ‘undercooked’ starting side going into the first Super Rugby matches when you look at the amount of starters he’s omitted from the squad to face the Sharks? Having said that, one underestimates Ackerman at your own peril.

  • Comment 8, posted at 06.02.14 15:30:55 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @Talent (Comment 7) : No yes u right. But its about player management in rugby and teams that want to be successful cant just play the same 15 guys week in and week out as then injuries will occur. But that doesnt mean guys should sit around and wait till season starts. Warm up games are important for players to condition themselves to the speed at which they make tackles and scrum etc which you cant simulate at practise. So what i was saying is that warm up games are vital but coaches also need to use them wisely to make sure the entire squad is fresh and in shape. Warm up games also allows the coach the chance to assess his game plan structures etc. So we as fans need to get used to see different lineups each week. Its only way guys will stay fresh and strong

  • Comment 9, posted at 06.02.14 15:35:40 by SheldonK Reply

  • @SheldonK (Comment 9) : I agree with you; they are invaluable for scrumming.

    What Im saying is, depending on where your bye is and who you draw in the early stages, you could perhaps enter the competition slightly under-cooked(a calculated risk). We have seen the Sharks start like a house on fire and then fade into obscurity far too often due to injuries and fatigue. I would rather hit your stride when other teams begin to fade at the business end of the competition. As I’ve said there are some factors that would effect the viability of this…

  • Comment 10, posted at 06.02.14 15:50:23 by Talent Reply
  • @Talent (Comment 10) : Yeh i know what you mean and a lot of teams seem to be less focused on going all out crazy on the pre-season fitness etc and rather now enter the comp fairly fit in the hope that their players play themselves fit. So preseason is about strength and ball skills etc

  • Comment 11, posted at 06.02.14 16:06:52 by SheldonK Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 6) :
    Jeez just google imaged him.

    Definitely had the wrong bloke in mind lol!

    Who the hell was I thinking of, he’s a big whitey?

  • Comment 12, posted at 06.02.14 16:29:21 by John Galt Reply

    John Galt
  • @John Galt (Comment 12) :
    Ahh, Ruan Combrinck is the bloke I was thinking of.
    Apologies to all concerned. Lol.

  • Comment 13, posted at 06.02.14 16:34:15 by John Galt Reply

    John Galt
  • @John Galt (Comment 13) : it happens to the best of us 🙂

  • Comment 14, posted at 06.02.14 16:53:49 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Ruan Lerm is a very good player, usually plays 8, but hard enough for 7 and has the work rate

  • Comment 15, posted at 07.02.14 01:14:47 by Ludz Reply

  • @talent – I believe that these warm ups are critical and their positives far outweigh the risk of injury. You only have to look how much more competitive yhe ozzies were last season due to an early start.

    Injuries are unfortunate and freak ones happen. But If we manage our player resources well and give traditionally overplayed players sufficient time off we should do ok

    I think for the first time in a long while we have sufficient depth in most positions to allow players time off without compromising the team. Kudos to brendan and john for buying one or two players and developing depth in the currie cup.

    I still think were a bit short at one, four and nine but hey give it time.

  • Comment 16, posted at 07.02.14 06:25:18 by byron Reply

  • hopefully now that we are playing his “2nd stringers” we will be careful how we play. be hard but try things.

  • Comment 17, posted at 07.02.14 07:13:51 by Dunx Reply

  • @Dunx (Comment 17) : How do you be careful on a rugby field? haha im confused

  • Comment 18, posted at 07.02.14 07:59:35 by SheldonK Reply

  • I dont know how i feel about this team, on the one side it will give us the oppertunity to sharpen out deph against very good opposition, on the other hand out combonations may be rusty next week when it all starts

  • Comment 19, posted at 07.02.14 09:29:15 by Mutley Reply
  • But i am glad to see Willie du Plessis in the mix. I was glad when we signed him, he has a big future.

  • Comment 20, posted at 07.02.14 09:30:31 by Mutley Reply
  • Rob are you planning on creating a thread for the game this evening? I’m happy to quickly write one if it’ll help out. Let me know.

  • Comment 21, posted at 07.02.14 11:45:26 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • No Warren Whitely?

  • Comment 22, posted at 07.02.14 11:58:26 by StretchB Reply

  • @vanmartin (Comment 21) : yeah, I’ll do it later

  • Comment 23, posted at 07.02.14 12:26:39 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Rob, Heard the VC team had a warm up against CollegeR. Any news ?

  • Comment 24, posted at 07.02.14 12:58:17 by Observer Reply

  • @Observer (Comment 24) : not a peep, I fear.

    Will dig

  • Comment 25, posted at 07.02.14 13:44:45 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • What time is kick off UK time? I want to follow this on my phone! 🙂

  • Comment 26, posted at 07.02.14 14:21:50 by SeanyJMc Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 25) : spoke to puppy,he said vc has massive amounts of talent available,but that we all know,he said rovers team has lots of gees and did ok,4 tries to zip down in the last 2 chuckers.First 2 chuckers rovers were down 1 try to zip but he is not sure because he was warming up.

  • Comment 27, posted at 07.02.14 14:24:44 by bobby 26 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
  • @SeanyJMc (Comment 26) : 5pm UK

  • Comment 28, posted at 07.02.14 14:27:10 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 28) : Thanks! Have to sneakily watch it at UK :mrgreen:

  • Comment 29, posted at 07.02.14 14:41:00 by SeanyJMc Reply

  • @SeanyJMc (Comment 29) : how?

  • Comment 30, posted at 07.02.14 14:47:14 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 30) : Wow, that sentence made absolutely no sense haha 😆 I’m at work and rushing my typing clearly. I meant to say I’ll have to sneakily watch (the updates on this site) at work. If only it was televised!!

  • Comment 31, posted at 07.02.14 18:45:19 by SeanyJMc Reply


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