Sharks expect no honeymoon against Saracens, but Lambie does

2014-01-16 00:00

PAT Lambie is missing, but new Sharks coach Jake White has otherwise named close to his strongest available squad for the first pre-season friendly against Saracens at Allianz Park in London on January 25.

There is nothing sinister in the absence of Lambie. The 23-year-old is marrying Kate Symons this Saturday and he will, presumably, be on honeymoon while his Sharks team-mates are battling Saracens a week later.

White has already publicly announced that Lambie will play flyhalf, and nowhere else, for the Sharks during the Super Rugby season.

Either Tim Swiel, the Western Province U21 signing, or Fred Zeilinga is expected to fill the flyhalf berth against Saracens.

White yesterday named 25 players for the London trip and included all his current Springbok forwards for what promises to be a tough first outing.

Three Springboks, Lambie and the Japan-based JP Pietersen and Ryan Kankowski, are missing. Pietersen and Kankowski are expected back in Durban early next month.

Fullback SP Marais and lock Anton Bresler are sidelined by injury but, surprisingly, centre Paul Jordaan, who is recovering from major knee surgery and was expected to miss the opening rounds of Super Rugby, has been included.

Four players who started the Currie Cup final are not in the group. They are Marais, Lambie, centre Louis Ludik, who is now in France, and lock Peet Marais while prop Wiehahn Herbst and flank Jacques Botes came off the bench at Newlands.

New lock Etienne Oosthuizen, signed from the Brumbies, and the Sharks U21 centres Andre Esterhuizen and Tyler Fisher will also travel to London.

There are 13 Springbok caps in the squad, including Willem Alberts, Jannie and Bismarck du Plessis, Beast Mtawari, Marcell Coetzee, Pieter Steph du Toit and new tighthead signing Lourens Adriaanse.

White said yesterday that he was excited about the squad

“This match will provide us with the ideal opportunity to view the depth in our squad as we look to conclude our preparations ahead of the start of the Super Rugby tournament.

“It is great to have our Springboks back and available for selection. We are expecting a highly-competitive match against Saracens and are looking forward to the encounter.”


Forwards: Lourens Adriaanse, Willem Alberts, Dale Chadwick, Marcell Coetzee, Kyle Cooper, Keegan Daniel, Jean Deysel, Bismarck du Plessis, Jannie du Plessis, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Stephan Lewies, Tendai Mtawarira, Tera Mtembu, Etienne Oosthuizen.

Backs: Andre Esterhuizen, Tyler Fisher,

Paul Jordaan, Charl McLeod, Lwazi Mvovo,

Odwa Ndungane, Cobus Reinach, Francois Steyn, Timothy Swiel, Jaco van Tonder, Heimar Williams, Fred Zeilinga.

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