Lions, Cheetahs name teams for Challenge Cup debuts

Andries Coetzee. (Photo by Chris Fairweather/Getty Images)
Andries Coetzee. (Photo by Chris Fairweather/Getty Images)

The Lions and Cheetahs teams for their Challenge Cup debuts were named on Friday.

The Lions host Welsh side Dragons in Johannesburg on Saturday (12:45), before the Cheetahs tackle Section Paloise (Pau) in France at 15:00 (SA time).

The Challenge Cup is the second-tier European club competition, below the Champions Cup which features South Africa's Stormers, Bulls and Sharks.

For the Lions, centre Rynhardt Jonker will make his debut off the bench, while experienced fullback Andries Coetzee returns in concert with Edwill van der Merwe and Rabz Maxwane at the back.

Zander du Plessis will get a starting opportunity alongside Sango Xamlashe in midfield.

Lions team:

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Rabz Maxwane, 13 Sango Xamlashe, 12 Zander du Plessis, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Gianni Lombard, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Emmanuel Tshituka, 7 Darrien Landsberg, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Reinhard Nothnagel (captain), 4 Ruben Schoeman, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 PJ Botha, 1 Sti Sithole

Substitutes: 16 Jaco Visagie, 17 JP Smith, 18 Asenathi Ntlabakanye, 19 Ruan Venter, 20 Sibusiso Sangweni, 21 Sanele Nohamba, 22 Jordan Hendrikse, 23 Rynhardt Jonker

Meanwhile, the Cheetah have two Springboks - scrumhalf Ruan Pienaar and fullback Frans Steyn - in their starting line-up.

Cheetahs team:

15 Frans Steyn, 14 Daniel Kasende, 13 David Brits, 12 Reinhardt Fortuin, 11 Tapiwa Mafura, 10 Siya Masuku, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Friedle Olivier, 7 Oupa Mohoje, 6 Jeandre Rudolph, 5 Victor Sekekete, 4 Mzwanele Zito, 3 Aranos Coetzee, 2 Louis van der Westhuizen, 1 Schalk Ferreira

Substitutes: 16 Marko Janse van Rensburg, 17 Mzamo Majola, 18 Hencus van Wyk, 19 Rynier Bernardo, 20 Sibabalo Qoma, 21 Daniel Maartens, 22 Rewan Kruger, 23 Robert Ebersohn

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