United Rugby Championship

Sharks load side with returning Springboks for Bulls, Mbonambi debuts

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Lukhanyo Am (Gallo)
Lukhanyo Am (Gallo)

Sharks coach Sean Everitt has called on his returning Springboks for Friday's United Rugby Championship clash against the Bulls in Durban.

The Durbanites have included all their frontline Boks in the starting line-up, with skipper Lukhanyo Am leading the side from the inside centre position.

Sbu Nkosi starts at right wing and Makazole Mapimpi on the left.

Up front, national captain Siya Kolisi starts in the No 6 jersey and Bok hooker Bongi Mbonambi will make his Sharks debut having recently joined from the Stormers.

"It's great to have the Boks back with us," Everitt admitted. "They've come back into the squad full of energy and enthusiasm and have acted like true professionals, returning to the Sharks showing great discipline and preparation from the Springboks, something they've passed on to the younger players."

Teams:

Sharks

15 Anthony Volmink, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Jeremy Ward, 12 Lukhanyo Am (captain), 11 Makzole Mapimpi, 10 Boeta Chamberlain, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Phepsi Buthelezi, 7 Jeandre Labuschagne, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Ntuthuko Mchunu

Substitutes: 16 Kerron van Vuuren, 17 Khwezi Mona, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Reniel Hugo, 20 Henco Venter, 21 Sanele Nohamba, 22 Tito Bonilla, 23 Werner Kok

Bulls

15 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 14 Madosh Tambwe, 13 David Kriel, 12 Cornal Hendricks, 11 Richard Kriel, 10 Morne Steyn, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Elrigh Louw, 7 Arno Botha, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Walt Steenkamp, 3 Robert Hunt, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Gerhard Steenkamp

Substitutes: 16 Johan Grobbelaar, 17 Simphiwe Matanzima, 18 Lizo Gqoboka, 19 Jacques du Plessis, 20 Sintu Manjezi, 21 Zak Burger, 22 Chris Smith, 23 Harold Vorster



There are also other experienced campaigners in the starting line-up, like Bok scrumhalf Ruan Pienaar and prop Thomas du Toit.

Everitt added that they were looking forward to playing in front of their home fans, even though the number would be limited to 2 000 due to Covid-19 protocols.

"While we're up against a tough side in the Bulls, this is a Sharks side that grew over the first four rounds of the URC and we’re looking forward to taking the Bulls on in front of our fans, even if it’s a limited number," Everitt said.

"It's going to be great to have spectators cheering the Sharks on and I'm sure the players will deliver a performance fitting the gratitude they have for their support."

Friday's clash at Kings Park kicks off at 19:00.

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