Cape Town - The Cheetahs made sure they surround young flyhalf Johan Goosen with enough experience for their first Super Rugby clash against the Lions in Johannesburg.
Therefore they decided to pick Tewis de Bruyn and Springbok Andries Strauss at inside centre to ensure there's enough experience inside and outside Goosen.Earlier reports indicated
that the Pieter van Zyl would start at No 9 for the central union. Strauss was picked ahead of the strong Philip Snyman for the season-opener.
"Had we picked Pieter and Philip in the starting team, our 9, 10 and 12 would have no Super Rugby experience in their positions," Hawies Fourie, the Cheetahs' backline coach, told Volksblad
Van Zyl and Goosen have never played Super Rugby before, while Snyman has only played at wing in Super Rugby.
"The season is still young and everyone will get enough playing time, whether it's in starting team or from the bench. Pieter should get enough of a chance against Lions," said Fourie.
He admitted that the coaching staff discussed the issue long and hard before a decision was made.
Meanwhile, flank Lappies Labuschagné had to, as expected, withdraw due to a shoulder injury. He injured his shoulder playing for Shimlas against Maties in the Varsity Cup on Monday night. He is replaced by Philip van der Walt, with Bok Ashley Johnson still amongst the reserves.Teams:Lions:
15 Jaco Taute, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Doppies le Grange, 12 Alwyn Hollenbach, 11 James Kamana, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Michael Bondesio, 8 Joshua Strauss (captain), 7 Derick Minnie, 6 Cobus Grobbelaar, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Wikus van Heerden/ Hendrik Roodt, 3 Patric Cilliers, 2 Callie Visagie, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Substitutes: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Jacobie Adriaanse/ CJ van der Linde, 18 Hendrik Roodt / Stephan Greeff, 19 Warren Whiteley, 20 Tian Meyer, 21 Butch James, 22 Lionel Mapoe.Cheetahs:
15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Dusty Noble, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Andries Strauss, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Tewis de Bruyn, 8 Davon Raubenheimer, 7 Philip van der Walt, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Izak van der Westhuizen, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Trevor Nyakane
Substitutes: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Lourens Adriaanse, 18 Waltie Vermeulen, 19 Ashley Johnson, 20 Pieter van Zyl, 21 Sias Ebersohn, 22 Willie le Roux