Super Rugby

Southern Kings make six changes for Lions den

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Southern Kings head coach Deon Davids has named a team with six changes to his starting line up and named a new captain to face Super Rugby’s leaders the Lions.

While facing the top team at home is not enough of a daunting task coach Deon Davids has also named three players to make their debut against the Lions.

Edgar Marutlulle will lead the Kings in Johannesburg as Steven Sykes was not available for personal reasons.

Four changes in the forwards see Sti Sithole rotating with Schalk Ferreira at loosehead prop, while Jacobie Adriaanse returns at tighthead after missing out last week’s game against the Highlanders due to a late calf strain and Schalk Oelosfe comes in at left lock in place of Sykes.

Making his debut for the Southern Kings and earning his first start in the Super Rugby competition is Andile Ntsila, who joined the Southern Kings on loan from the SWD Eagles yesterday.

Davids said Ntsila would have a significant role to play as a fetcher for the team, but he was confident in his abilities.

Davids has also opted to start with James Hall at scrumhalf, who returns from playing for the SA U20s in the junior world championships in Manchester, England.

At Flyhalf, Elgar Watts moves onto the bench, with Louis Fouche starting.

Also making their Super Rugby debuts are Sintu Manjezi and Jeremy Ward, who will be on the bench for Friday’s game, having been called up from the EP Currie Cup squad.

Marutlulle said he was looking forward to the match against the Lions, saying it was a great opportunity for the team to showcase their skills, and that they had taken heart from their previous performance against the Lions at Nelson Mandela Bay.

Southern Kings

15: Malcolm Jaer , 14: Lukhanyo Am , 13: Stefan Watermeyer , 12: Shane Gates (VC) , 11: Wandile Mjekevu , 10: Louis Fouche , 9: James Hall , 8: Aidon Davis , 7: Stefan Willemse , 6: Andisa Ntsila (Debut) , 5: JC Astle , 4: Schalk Oelofse , 3: Jacobie Adriaanse , 2: Edgar Marutlulle (C) , 1: Sti Sithole

Replacements : 16: Martin Bezuidenhout , 17: Schalk Ferreira , 18: Tom Botha , 19: Sintu Manjezi (Debut) , 20: Jacques Engelbrecht , 21: Ntando Kebe , 22: Dewald Human , 23: Jeremy Ward (Debut)

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