Three new players for Lions




Lions coach Eugene Eloff has included three newcomers to the Lions starting line-up to play the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein in their first Super 14 match of the season.

Hard hit by injuries to their two remaining World Cup stars Andre Pretorius and Jaque Fourie and their two loose forwards, captain Ernst Joubert and Willem Alberts, Eloff had the good news that scrumhalf Jano Vermaak and lock Anton van Zyl are fit and they have both been selected.

The newcomers are wing Dusty Noble, No 8 RW Kember and prop Ross Geldenhuys. Former Springbok Joe van Niekerk starts on the bench.

He was fit enough to be selected, but Eloff says he gave an undertaking to Van Niekerk that he would phase him in after injury and not throw him to the wolves.

The Lions team is:

Louis Ludik, Dusty Noble, Jaco Pretorius, Doppies le Grange, Ryno Benjamin, Louis Strydom, Jano Vermaak, RW Kember, Franco van der Merwe, Cobus Grobbelaar, Gerhard Mostert, Anton van Zyl, Ross Geldenhuys, Willie Wepener, Heinke van der Merwe.

Replacements: Gavin Williamson, Gert-Andres van der Merwe, Alten Hulme, Joe van Niekerk, Chris Jonck, Earl Rose, Jaco van Schalkwyk.   


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