United Rugby Championship

New Lions signing Edwill van der Merwe to debut on the wing against Cardiff

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Winger Edwill van der Merwe has completed his move to the Lions. (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)
Winger Edwill van der Merwe has completed his move to the Lions. (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)

New Lions signing Edwill van der Merwe will make his debut in the No 14 jersey when the Johannesburg outfit take on Cardiff on Sunday in a United Rugby Championship clash at Ellis Park.

They have also been boosted by the returning duo of Willem Alberts and Tiaan Swanepoel from long-term injuries. The two will take up places on the bench.

Other changes see Fred Zeilinga assume the No 10 position, with Matt More coming in as backline cover.

"It's good to be back home. We've put in solid training sessions on and off the field over the past three weeks and the guys are looking in great shape and quite excited to play at home," said Lions coach Ivan van Rooyen.

"Our focus this weekend is to achieve a positive result by executing on the plans we have set out for ourselves as a squad and most importantly improving on the gains we achieved overseas in certain areas," he added.

2 000 spectators are expected to grace the stadium on Sunday, and Van Rooyen expects their presence to have a say in how the game goes.

"The fact that we'll have a few fans back is a bonus. It may not be a large amount, but it goes a very long way in creating an atmosphere at the stadium and serves as added motivation for the players," said Van Rooyen.

The Lions are currently 13th on the overall log.

Kick-off on Sunday is at 16:00.

*An earlier version of the story indicated that Edwill van der Merwe would start at number 11 wing, this has since been corrected by the Lions that he will in fact be wearing number 14, and the story has been updated to reflect the change.

Teams:

Cardiff

TBA

Lions

15 EW Viljoen, 14 Edwill van der Merwe, 13 Wandisile Simelane, 12 Burger Odendaal (captain), 11 Rabz Maxwane, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Francke Horn, 7 Vincent Tshituka, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Reinhard Nothnagel, 4 Ruben Schoeman, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Sti Sithole

Substitutes: 16 PJ Botha, 17 Morgan Naude, 18 Ruan Dreyer, 19 Willem Alberts, 20 Ruhan Straeuli, 21 Morne van den Berg, 22 Matt More, 23 Tiaan Swanepoel.

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