Who will bite first?

2014-10-17 00:00

IT is all systems go for the Currie Cup semi-final between the Lions and Sharks at Ellis Park tomorrow.

Both teams have named relatively unchanged sides from last weekend’s final round-robin stage. For the Sharks, only hooker Kyle Cooper returns after an ankle niggle. The Lions’ starting XV remains unchanged, while Kwagga Smith is on the bench after a weekend away with the Blitsbokke.

“We’ve got some consistency … picked up no injuries against Province and had a great second half so we’re happy. Kyle missed out on the Province trip, but he’s had a great season,” said Sharks coach Brad Macleod-Henderson.

There is a potentially spicy battle between flyhalves Lionel Cronje and Lions pivot Marnitz Boshoff. Both are in good form although their styles differ.

While Cronje is a strong attacking flyhalf testing the defensive line, Boshoff is more tactical and likes the boot.

“Lionel has had a fantastic Currie Cup. He started on the bench, didn’t get many opportunities, but when he did, he grabbed it with both hands. He’s helped our attack because he threatens the gain line. Defensively he’s been strong; kicks goals and kicks the ball a long way,” the coach said.

Macleod-Henderson said Boshoff would have a crucial role in orchestrating the Lions’ play and his charges must be well-disciplined to stop Boshoff’s deadly goal-kicking boot.

“Boshoff is a Springbok and quality player … he’s a more mature head, [giving] them guidance and direction. We have to be on top of our game,” Macleod-Henderson said.

Action will happen upfront with the Lions’ scrum rated one of the best. Sharks captain Tera Mtembu said his forwards have prepared as well as possible.

While there is a possibility of a Durban home final, he insisted his side only have eyes on this weekend’s clash.

“There’s always pressure … it’s about taking opportunities and executing well. Both teams want to get to the final, but the [one executing] best, will win.”

The Sharks face the Lions at 2.30 pm tomorrow. The team includes:

SP Marais, Tonderai Chavhanga, S’bura Sithole, Andre Esterhuizen, Lwazi Mvovo, Lionel Cronje, Cobus Reinach, Tera Mtembu (c), Etienne Oosthuizen, Jacques Botes, Marco Wentzel, Stephan Lewies, Matt Stevens, Kyle Cooper, Thomas du Toit.

Replacements: Monde Hadebe, Dale Chadwick, Lourens Adriaanse, JC Astle, Khaya Majola, Conrad Hoffmann, Fred Zeilinga.

Lions team (15-1): Jaco van der Walt, Ruan Combrinck, Lionel Mapoe, Howard Mnisi, Courtnall Skosan, Marnitz Boshoff, Ross Cronje, Warren Whiteley (c), Derick Minnie, Jaco Kriel, Franco Mostert, Martin Muller, Ruan Dreyer, Robbie Coetzee, Schalk van der Merwe.

Replacements: Armand van der Merwe, Julian Redelinghuys, Willie Britz, Warwick Tecklenburg, Kwagga Smith, Mark Richards, Harold Vorster.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.