Massive quarter-final challenge

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks on 30 Jun 2017 at 12:34
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , , ,

The rugby gods giveth and those same gods taketh away and Sharks XV coach Paul Anthony will certainly feel that he’s being made to pay a heavy price for last week’s bounty. Gone are any vestiges of Super Rugby experience from the team named to face the Blue Bulls in Sunday’s SuperSport Challenge quarterfinal and with injury further adding to selection woes, Anthony has been forced to name a very inexperienced side indeed.

The repercussions of Springbok niggles are felt here too – Beast Mtawaarira’s week off means that Juan Schoeman plays super Rugby and Gerhard Engelbrecht has to switch to loose head prop from his more regular tight head role. Johnny Meyer is back, at least, to hold the other side of the scrum, with some continuity in the form of hooker Stephan Coetzee. Stalwart Hyron Andrews has also been called up for Super Rugby bench duty, meaning a switch from 4 to 5 for Jean Droste and elevation to the starting line-up for young Rikus Zwart. Keegan Daniel and Khaya Majola provide a rare smattering of Super Rugby experience in the loose trio (the former captains the side) with Wian Vosloo ever dependable on the blind side.

Rowan Gouws and Benhard Janse van Rensburg are a good enough halfback pairing at this level, but Anthony and Ricardo Loubscher would not have chosen this match to hand a first start to Rovers player Brandon Bailing, who comes in at inside centre. Tristan Blewett is outside him, with Morne Joubert and Ilunga Mukendi the wingers. Another youngster, Courtney Winnar, is at fullback; he, at least, has played a fair bit for the XV this season.

Spare a thought for Marius Louw, named on the bench here just as he has been for the Sharks Super Rugby team. It’s going to be a busy weekend for the Grey High old boy who – hopefully – will go straight from his Super Rugby capping ceremony to the airport to meet the rest of the squad in Cape Town. Sunday’s match kicks off at 12h45 at Green Point Stadium and will be shown live on SuperSport 1.

Sharks XV : 15 Courtney Winnaar, 14 Morne Joubert, 13 Tristan Blewett, 12 Brandon Bailing, 11 Ilunga Mukendi, 10 Benhard Janse van Rensburg, 9 Rowan Gouws, 8 Keegan Daniel (capt), 7 Wian Vosloo. 6 Khaya Majola, 5 Jean Droste, 4 Rikus Zwart, 3 John-Hubert Meyer, 2 Stephan Coetzee, 1 Gerhard Engelbrecht
Subs: 16 Andrew du Plessis, 17 Thierry Kounga, 18 Bandisa Ndlovu, 19 Graham Geldenhuys, 20 Hanco Venter, 21 Danrich Visagie, 22 Marius Louw


  • The nothing cup serves only to feed our respective CC teams and SR team….results in this comp has no more meaning than warm-up games.

  • Comment 1, posted at 30.06.17 13:53:22 by FireTheLooser Reply
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 1) : It has plenty meaning for the few that show up and support the boys. It certainly has meaning to me as I want them to win all competitions they enter

  • Comment 2, posted at 30.06.17 16:25:26 by Poisy Reply
  • @Poisy (Comment 2) : For me, the importance factor lines up as follows:

    5-Supersport Challenge

    Everything should be done with the sole purpose of winning SR, that is the pinnacle of club/franchise/provincial rugby these days.

    Supersport challenge team will always suck on the hind tit….would be nice to win it all, but SR is what it all needs to build toward.

  • Comment 3, posted at 30.06.17 18:50:48 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @Poisy (Comment 2) : I intend to watch this game live at the stadium (the game afterwards should be good too)

    however with so many injuries to the greater squad specially at centre, I just hope the boys but in a good shift and lets see what happens.

    Excited to watch the sharks live, considering I just missed the horror show of a SR game on tv just now

  • Comment 4, posted at 30.06.17 21:11:45 by revolverocelot Reply

  • Rough day at the cold and windy stadium.

    Rough weekend for the sharks union a whole as this weekend was some what a test of ability and resources in comparison to the Bulls union.

    A full strength sharks 15 would have put up more of a fight, our inexperience was telling in this game. hats off to the blue bulls today they were well drilled and accurate with their game plan, that manie libbok kid can play, speed and stepping for days, jt jackson looks good, all their baby boks played well and their captain like keegs lead from the front with a good performance. unlucky for keegs his team couldnt handle the game.

    the injuries to the super rugby team and the usual sharks 15 players really came back to haunt us. the wind conditions didnt help either.

    oh well, would have loved to have gone further in the tournament but I’m happy with what we did with all the injuries and changes to the sharks 15 squad through out the season. looking forward to seeing some of these guys step up in the cc later this year.

    All is not lost for the SR team either, maybe we lose to the lions as well and then use that experience and some how pull off a win in the quarter final, even in Christchurch, you never know.

  • Comment 5, posted at 02.07.17 14:44:10 by revolverocelot Reply


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