Lambie benched, Beast out
Durban - The much-awaited return to action of Cell C Sharks flyhalf Pat Lambie is a big boost to the side named to host the Highlanders at Kings Park in Saturday’s Vodacom Super Rugby quarter-final.
Kick-off is at 17:05.Sharks website
editor Michael Marnewick
reports that Cobus Reinach
too is back in the starting line-up after being named last week but having to pull out late with a minor complaint and didn’t feature against the Stormers.
But the big news is Lambie’s return in place of Fred Zeilinga
, albeit it on the bench. He last represented the Cell C Sharks almost four months ago but has been out with a torn biceps injury sustained against the Bulls in March and makes a welcome return to the team at this critical juncture.
Director of Rugby Jake White
is under no illusions that despite his team’s good form and strong squad, they are up against formidable opposition who defeated his team earlier in the season.
“When they are on song, they can perform – they beat some big teams this year and this is a team that can score tries, they have the players,” he explains. “But, in saying that, the nice thing we have in our favour is that we lost to them. I know I don’t have to talk much this week. The players will know it’s not just going to happen. I think in a lot of ways, we were on a high in that pool game back in April, about to tour, and we ended up losing that game. We’ll be a lot more focussed this week.
“In a lot of ways, it’s probably a good thing for us, a boost, that they beat us. Had we beaten them comfortably perhaps we would have gone into this game thinking it was a fait accompli. In a lot of ways we get to have another crack at them.” JP Pietersen
has been declared fit after a clash with Duane Vermeulen
last week and Reinach is the only change to the team that ran out against the Stormers. Teams:Sharks
15. SP Marais, 14. S’bura Sithole, 13. JP Pietersen
, 12. Paul Jordaan
, 11. Lwazi Mvovo
, 10. Frans Steyn
, 9. Cobus Reinach
, 8. Ryan Kankowski
, 7. Willem Alberts
, 6. Marcell Coetzee
, 5. Stephan Lewies
, 4. Anton Bresler
, 3. Jannie du Plessis, 2. Bismarck du Plessis (captain), 1. Thomas du Toit
Substitutes: 16. Kyle Cooper
, 17. Dale Chadwick
, 18. Lourens Adriaanse
, 19. Etienne Oosthuizen, 20. Jean Deysel
, 21. Charl McLeod, 22. Pat Lambie, 23. Tonderai ChavhangaHighlanders
15 Ben Smith (co-captain), 14 Richard
Buckman, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Phil Burleigh, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10
Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu (co-captain), 7. Shane
Christie, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Jarrad Hoeata, 3 Chris King, 2
Ged Robinson, 1 Kane Hames
Substitutes: 16 Liam Coltman, 17
Matias Diaz, 18 JP
Koen, 19 Josh Bekhuis, 20 Tom Franklin, 21 Fumiaki
Tanaka, 22 Trent Renata, 23 Gareth Evans