Super Rugby

Sharks' Esterhuizen: 'Every game is vital from now on'

Cape Town - Sharks No 12 Andre Esterhuizen insists every game is vital as the Durban franchise meet the Lions in their Super Rugby encounter at Kings Park on Saturday.

Esterhuizen has returned to the Sharks starting line-up and is the only change to a very settled backline.

The 25-year-old admitted that there's great excitement in the camp ahead of the game.

"We're back, refreshed after the bye week and ready for this match," the centre told the Sharks website.

"There are a lot of positives in this group, primarily that we are not going to play with a fear of losing, we want to play to win and enjoy the game."

With four games remaining, Esterhuizen admits that the two home and two away games take on great importance for the team's campaign, particularly as congested as the table is.

"Every game is vital from now on, there are just a few points that separates the teams in the South African Conference, so we know the importance of every single game," he said.

"But we aren't putting pressure on ourselves; we're going out there to enjoy it and play for each other. That's what we thrived on during the tour and it worked for us."

Kick-off on Saturday is at 17:15 SA time.

Teams:

Sharks

15 Aphelele Fassi, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Louis Schreuder (captain), 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Kerron van Vuuren, 1 Mzamo Majola

Substitutes: 16 Dylan Richardson, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 John-Hubert Meyer, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Jacques Vermeulen, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Robert du Preez, 23 Kobus van Wyk

Lions

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi; 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Nic Groom; 8 Kwagga Smith (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Stephan Lewies, 3 Johannes Jonker, 2 Jan-Henning Campher, 1 Dylan Smith

Substitutes:16 Pieter Jansen, 17 Sti Sithole, 18 Carlu Sadie, 19 Reinhard Nothnagel, 20 Vincent Tshituka, 21 Hacjivah Dayimani, 22 Shaun Reynolds, 23 Tyrone Green

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