Game time for Lambie

2014-08-14 00:00

PAT Lambie has returned to Durban for tomorrow night’s Currie Cup clash between the Sharks and the Pumas where he will provide cover from the bench.

Lambie was yesterday released from the Springbok squad for this weekend’s Rugby Championship opener against Argentina to get some game time under his belt. Bok coach Heyneke Meyer is concerned about the short turnaround Lambie had after a lengthy injury layoff.

The move is similar to the releases of Eben Etzebeth and Frans Malherbe, who both featured for Western Province last week.

“Pat missed four months of Super Rugby and although he made his return towards the end of the competition, it was felt that he could do with game time this weekend before we leave for Argentina and we’d like to thank the Sharks for agreeing to give him a run,” Meyer said.

Besides the addition of the Springbok, the only change to the starting XV that beat the Griquas last weekend sees lock JC Astle replace Stephan Lewies. Lewies picked up a knock last weekend and will not feature tomorrow.

The Sharks backline remains the same and will look for another dominant performance given that their forwards provide some power upfront.

Macleod-Henderson may have been tempted to give Lambie a start but Fred Zeilinga had a big part to play in the Sharks’ first win of the season.

Nevertheless, Macleod-Henderson is relishing being back infront of the King’s Park faithful.

“We’re very excited and looking forward to being back home, it’s fantastic to play at King’s Park, and we’ve taken a lot of confidence out of our away win last week,” he said.

The Pumas have also named a familiar side, with only one change in the starting line-up that upset the Cheetahs last weekend. Giant Mtyanda has earned himself a start after playing off the bench last weekend.

Former Sharks and College Rovers wing Ros­co Speckman also returns from injury and will be a danger on attack for the Pumas.

Kick-off is at 7.10 pm tomorrow.

‘Equal ground’ for both teams

SHARKS fullback SP Marais believes the Pumas are a force to be reckoned with.

“If you look at where they’ve been and where they are now, all the awards must be given to their coaching staff,” he said.

“It’s not going to be easy; they are a very difficult side. They are similar to the Bulls but I think they just run a bit more so it’s going to be tough,” he added.

The fullback also reckons that there isn’t much between any of the teams in this year’s Currie Cup.

“It’s all equal ground, especially with the fact that there are no Springboks. I think that the team who arrive on the day, who want it more, will get the win” he said.

Pumas coach Jimmy Stonehouse is focusing on accuracy for the clash against the defending Currie Cup champions after a good win last week.

“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 told Sapa.

“We should be better on Friday evening. We will face a much stronger team but we hope it will go better,” he added.

Sharks team (1-15): SP Marais, Odwa Ndungane, S’bura Sithole, Paul Jordaan, Tonderai Chavhanga, Fred Zeilinga, Cameron Wright, Tera Mtembu (C), Etienne Oosthuizen, Jacques Botes, Marco Wentzel, JC Astle, Lourens Adriaanse, Kyle Cooper, Thomas du Toit.

Replacements: Monde Hadebe, Matt Stevens, Johan Meyer, Francois

Kleinhans, Hanco Venter, Patrick Lambie, Lionel Cronjé.

Pumas team (1-15): JW Bell, Ruwellyn Isbell, JW Jonker, Stefan Watermeyer, Jerome Pretorius, Justin van Staden, Reynier van Rooyen,

Renaldo Bothma, Jaco Bouwer, Corné Steenkamp (captain), Giant Mtyanda, Frikkie Spies, DeJay Terblanche, Francois du Toit, Vincent Koch.

Replacements: Frankie Herne, Corné Fourie, Marius Coetzer, Uzair Cassiem, Rosco Speckman, JC Roos, Heinrich Steyl.

CURRIE CUP FIXTURES

• Sharks vs Pumas - King’s Park, Durban. Kick-off: Friday, 7.10 pm

• Western Province vs Bulls - Newlands, Cape Town. Kick-off: Saturday, 2 pm

• Lions vs EP Kings - Ellis Park,

Johannesburg. Kick-off: Saturday, 2.30 pm

• Cheetahs vs Griquas - Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein. Kick-off:

Saturday, 3 pm.

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