Super Rugby

Sharks make three changes for Chiefs



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Durban’s Sharks have named a team with three changes to the side that lost to the Bulls for this Saturday’s match against the Chiefs at Kings Park.

Philip van der Walt is over the knock to the face he took against the Highlanders and after missing the Bulls match, returns to action, with Jacques Vermeulen shifting to the bench.

Amongst the backs, there is rotation at scrumhalf for Louis Schreuder and Cameron Wright, likewise Lwazi Mvovo who exchanges jerseys with Makazole Mapimpi on the wing.

With the South African Super Rugby Conference looking congested, it makes for an interesting run towards the knock-out rounds, but it also means all five teams are under pressure to not let things slip.

Last week’s loss to the Bulls hurt the Sharks, but Saturday offers the Durban team an opportunity for redemption and who better to play than a New Zealand side, something that has been a shining star for the Sharks this season.

“We’ve had some success this season against new Zealand teams, we lift ourselves and maybe that’s part of the problem when we play home unions, the boys aren’t as mentally there as against the Kiwi sides which obviously isn’t right,” explains Sharks flyhalf Robert du Preez .

“But the Chiefs will know that we’ve done well against their fellow New Zealand sides and will prepare for that.

“The log is wide open, the Bulls, Jaguares and us are all on the same points with the Stormers one point behind, so there is a lot to play for and it’s still in our hands,” he says. “We aren’t in the situation where we have to depend on other teams winning or losing, we just need to win all our games, then we’ll be home and dry. We’re positive.

“We know we messed up against the Bulls, but this weekend is another chance to fix our mistakes and we’re looking forward to the game.”

The Sharks’ preparations for the match don’t change much, despite the prospect of a new-look Chiefs side that won’t resemble much what we’ve seen from them this season. Without many of their frontline players, the Chief will still come to Durban fresh off a win over the Stormers and, like us, plenty to play for.

“I don’t think their structures will change much, although they will have some new personnel, I can’t see them changing the way they play in one week. But you never know with New Zealand teams… We’ve done our studies and analysis and we kind of know what to expect,” du Preez concludes.


15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Ruan Botha (captain), 4 Tyler Paul, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Akker van der Merwe, 1 Tendai Mtawarira

Replacements: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Stephan Lewies, 20 Jacques Vermeulen, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Makazole Mapimpi

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