Pumas Currie Cup coach Jimmy Stonehouse has retained most of the team that beat the Cheetahs in Nelspruit for this Friday’s Currie Cup clash against champions the Sharks in Durban.
Stonehouse made a single change to the run-on side that beat the Free State Cheetahs 28-21 in Mbombela over the weekend.
Lock forward Marius Coetzer will move to the bench, with Giant Mtyanda earning a starting berth.
Further good news was that Pumas flyer Rosco Speckman, who was a late withdrawal for the Cheetahs clash, has fully recovered from a groin injury and will play off the bench.
Pumas assistant coach MJ Mentz said his charges were buoyed by past performances in Durban and they would be looking to return with some points in the bag.
“We’ve come away with bonus points before and if we beat them it would be good, but if we can get bonus points we would also consider it a job well done,” Mentz said.
While Stonehouse was not completely satisfied with his side’s performance, he was nevertheless encouraged by the winning start.
“For the first game back in the Currie Cup it wasn’t too bad, but I would like to see us make better use of our opportunities,” he said.
“We should be better on Friday evening. We will face a much stronger team but we hope it will go better.”
Stonehouse said although the Sharks will post a tougher challenge than the Cheetahs, his team will stick to their game plan instead of playing low-risk rugby.
JW Bell, Ruwellyn Isbell, JW Jonker, Stefan Watermeyer, Jerome Pretorius, Justin van Staden, Reynier van Rooyen, Renaldo Bothma, Jaco Bouwer, Corne Steenkamp (captain), Giant Mtyanda, Frikkie Spies, DeJay Terblanche, Francois du Toit, Vincent Koch.
Replacements: Frankie Herne, Corne Fourie, Marius Coetzer, Uzair Cassiem, Rosco Speckman, JC Roos, Heinrich Steyl.