Super Rugby

Penxe pedigree key to landing him Sharks gig

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Yaw Penxe
Yaw Penxe
  • Yaw Penxe's pedigree was key to him landing a short-term gig at the Sharks.
  • Sean Everitt, the Durbanites' head coach, was particularly impressed by the Southern Kings winger's hunger during last week's Springbok Showdown.
  • Meanwhile, the Sharks are keen to see how the man who set up Penxe's try-scoring chance at Newlands, Sanele Nohamba, kicks on.

Yaw Penxe's pedigree as a proven performer in PRO Rugby was a decisive factor in the Sharks moving for the gifted winger on a short-term deal.

The 23-year-old Southern Kings star has been left in limbo following the franchise's liquidation a few weeks ago and the sheer wastefulness of him remaining inactive came to head with a fine performance at the Springbok Showdown at Newlands last week.

National assistant coach Mzwandile Stick was so impressed with his protégé that he predicted Penxe wouldn't be stuck in PE anymore within the next fortnight.

As it turned out, it took about three days.

"Yaw is a player that's shone in the PRO14," Sean Everitt, the Sharks' head coach, said on Wednesday ahead of his team's Super Rugby Unlocked opener against the Lions at home on Friday evening.

"But he also did a damn good job on Saturday (at Newlands). He nearly had a try-scoring opportunity and worked hard on the field. Certainly a young guy like that can add huge value to our cause."

Penxe's presence also helps alleviate a current shortage of options on the wing, with Springboks Makazole Mapimpi and S'bu Nkosi having departed for Japan and still recovering from injury respectively.

"It's unfortunate that we've had injuries in that position and as well seeing Mapimps depart. He's arrived safely in Japan and we're really pleased for him that he's got that opportunity," said Everitt.

"S'bu is another two to three weeks away, while Madosh (Tambwe) only just missed out on selection this week but the extra week will actually do him good."

Meanwhile, Everitt is keen to see how Sanele Nohamba, who set up Penxe's almost-try last weekend, kicks on from an encouraging showing in the Springbok Showdown.

"Sanele was a shining light. I was extremely happy for him. I think the week he had with the Springboks was very good for him from a learning point of view," he said.

"He's already brought some of that confidence back to training this week. He's a livewire scrumhalf, quick and agile. He certainly understands the game. 

"Interestingly, for such a young guy, he already brings leadership into the mix too. He knows his role and responsibilities. He's able to conduct things from the back of the scrum. We're really excited about his growth at senior level."

Teams:

Sharks

15 Manie Libbok, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Lukhanyo Am (captain), 12 Marius Louw, 11 Werner Kok, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Phepsi Buthelezi, 6 James Venter, 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Dylan Richardson, 1 Ox Nche. 

Substitutes: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Mzamo Majola, 18 John-Hubert Meyer, 19 JJ van der Mescht, 20 Mpilo Gumede, 21 Grant Williams, 22 Jeremy Ward, 23 Thaakir Abrahams

Lions

15 EW Viljoen, 14 Jamba Ulengo, 13 Burger Odendaal, 12 Dan Kriel, 11 Rabz Maxwane, 10 Elton Jantjies (captain), 9 Dillon Smit, 8 Len Massyn, 7 Vince Tshituka, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Willem Alberts, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Sti Sithole. 

Substitutes: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Wiehahn Herbst, 19 Wilhelm van der Sluys, 20 MJ Pelser, 21 Hacjivah Dayimani, 22 Morne van den Berg, 23 Gianni Lombard, 24 Wandisile Simelane, 25 Ruan Dreyer.

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