WP name strong team for Bulls
Deon Fourie (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Several of their Super Rugby stalwarts will start for Western Province in their Currie Cup opener against the Blue Bulls at Newlands on Saturday.
Kick-off is at 17:05.
Flank Deon Fourie will captain the team from the No 6 jersey, with 2013 Stormers representatives, Gio Aplon, Gerhard van den Heever, Damian de Allende, Gary van Aswegen, Louis Schreuder, Kurt Coleman, Nic Groom, Nizaam Carr, Rynhardt Elstadt, Ruan Kitshoff, Rhodes, De Kock Steenkamp, Grobler, Cilliers, Brok Harris
, Scarra Ntubeni and Steven Kitshoff, all in the matchday squad.
There are also three starting debutants for the defending champions. Outside centre Pat Howard, left-wing Cheslin Kolbe and lock Gerbrandt Grobler will all be starting at Currie Cup level for the first time, whilst, on the bench, props Alistair Vermaak and Pat Cilliers and utility forward Michael Rhodes will play their first Currie Cup matches for WP.
Howard made three appearances - all from the bench - in last year's Currie Cup, whilst Kolbe, Grobler, Rhodes and Vermaak have all played Vodacom Cup rugby for Western Province. Cilliers, meanwhile, will make his WP debut after moving to Cape Town at the start of 2013.
WP coach Allister Coetzee
told the WP Rugby website
: "We're looking ahead to the 2013 Currie Cup season - it's another great opportunity (for us) to unearth some new talent.
"North-South derbies are always big games and we're not expecting anything different come this weekend. We're excited to be starting our campaign at home and we're hoping to have a big crowd at Newlands."Teams:Western Province:
15 Gio Aplon, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Pat Howard, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Cheslin Kolbe, 10 Gary van Aswegen, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Rynhardt Elstadt, 6 Deon Fourie (captain), 5 De Kock Steenkamp, 4 Gerbrandt Grobler, 3 Brok Harris
, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff
Substitutes: 16 Alistair Vermaak, 17 Pat Cilliers, 18 Michael Rhodes, 19 Ruan Kitshoff, 20 Nic Groom, 21 Kurt Coleman, 22 Berton KlaasenBlue Bulls:
15 Jürgen Visser, 14 Sampie Mastriet, 13 Ulrich Beyers, 12 Francois Venter, 11 Travis Ismaiel, 10 Tony Jantjies, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Jono Ross (captain), 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Wiaan Liebenberg, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Frik Kirsten, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 Morné Mellet.
Substitutes: 16 Callie Visagie, 17 Marcell van der Merwe, 18 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 19 Jean Cook, 20 Ruan Snyman, 21 Waylon Murray
, 22 Clayton Blommetjies