Sharks to play Lions in friendly tonight

2013-06-21 00:00

THE Sharks will bump a whole bunch of familiar faces when they face the Golden Lions in tonight’s friendly at Ellis Park.

The outing is aimed at providing match practice for the Lions, who have to play Super Rugby promotion-relegation matches (almost certainly against the Southern Kings) on Friday, July 26 (away) and then at home a week later.

The outing tonight provides half the Sharks Super Rugby team — the other half are with the Springbok squad — with valuable game time after the June break and before they take on the Auckland Blues at King’s Park next weekend.

The Lions are not only coached by former Sharks lock Johan Ackermann, but former Durban-based players, scrumhalf Ross Cronjé and prop Julian Redelinghuys, are in their starting line-up.

Two others, captain and loosehead Janse van Rensburg and flank Derick Minnie, were borrowed from the Lions by the injury-hit Sharks and played on the Super Rugby tour of Australia and New Zealand.

The Sharks’ interest will focus on the players who are finally returning from injury after months on the sidelines. Former Springbok flyhalf Butch James has his first run of the year, fullback Louis Ludik is back but playing at outside centre and prop Dale Chadwick also sees game time for the first time this season. John Plumtree’s first-choice scrumhalf Cobus Reinach is another to return to action and he is on the bench tonight.

Kick-off in this Challenge Series match is at 7 pm.



15. Chrysander Botha, 14. Ruan Combrinck, 13. Stokkies Hanekom, 12. Alwyn Hollenbach, 11. Anthony Volmink, 10. Marnitz Boshoff, 9. Ross Cronjé, 8. Willie Britz, 7. Derick Minnie, 6. Warwick Tecklenburg, 5. Hugo Kloppers, 4. Hendrik Roodt, 3. Julian Redelinghuys, 2. Francois du Toit, 1. JC Janse van Rensburg (captain) Replacements: 16. Robbie Coetzee, 17. CJ van der Linde, 18. Gavin Annandale, 19. Lambert Groenewald, 20. Michael Bondesio, 21. Dylan des Fountain, 22. Deon van Rensburg


15. Riaan Viljoen, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. Louis Ludik, 12. Heimar Williams, 11. Sean Robinson, 10. Butch James, 9. Charl McLeod, 8. Tera Mtembu, 7. Jean Deysel, 6. Keegan Daniel (captain), 5. Jandre Marais, 4. Edwin Hewitt, 3. Wiehahn Herbst, 2. Kyle Cooper, 1. Dale Chadwick Replacements: 16. Monde Hadebe, 17. Allan Dell, 18. Brynard Stander, 19. Khaya Majola, 20. Cobus Reinach, 21. Fred Zeilinga, 22. Tyler Fisher

Meanwhile, Blues coach John Kirwan has named all his All Black stars in a 26-man squad to travel to South Africa.

The Blues left Auckland yesterday bound for Durban but without their half-dozen All Blacks. The Blues play the Sharks on June 29 before facing the Cheetahs in Bloem­fontein a week later.

Kick-off for the Sharks-Blues game has been brought forward to 2.50 pm.

The Blues’ All Blacks Charles Piutau, Francis Saili, Steven Luatua, Piri Weepu, Keven Mealamu and Rene Ranger are with the New Zealand squad for this weekend’s third Test against France and they will only travel to Durban early next week. All will be available for selection.

The up-and-down Blues are eighth on the log (the Sharks are 10th) and Kirwan says a win over the Durban team will set up their top six (play-off) challenge.

“The second week really means nothing yet.

“The Sharks game is a must-win for us, it’s like our final and that’s because if we win that then we stay completely in touch with the top six.

“The Cheetahs will then become a different kettle of fish so we just need to get back on the horse and play a good game of footy against the Sharks.”


Tim Perry, Sam Prattley, Angus Ta’avao, Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Quentin MacDonald, Keven Mealamu, James Parsons, Anthony Boric, Culum Retallick, Ali Williams (captain), Luke Braid, Steven Luatua, Peter Saili, Brendon O’Connor, Kane Barrett, Jamison Gibson-Park, Piri Weepu, Baden Kerr, Chris Noakes, Francis Saili, Jackson Willison, Rene Ranger, George Moala, Frank Halai, Charles Piutau, Lolagi Visinia.

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