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    Sharks opt for continuity

    2014-03-20 08:25
    Durban - JP Pietersen will play his 100th Super Rugby match for an unchanged Cell C Sharks starting team when they face the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday night.

    According to Sharks website editor, Michael Marnewick, since making his debut in 2006, Pietersen has become a vital member of the team, scoring 33 tries in Super Rugby and 17 in 42 Currie Cup games and boasts a Rugby World Cup winners medal from 2007 (capped 51 times at Test level).

    “It is a big achievement for a guy that plays 100 times for his franchise,” explains director of rugby Jake White.

    “I have no doubt that it’s not only what he brings on the field, but also what he brings to the rest of the group off the field. I’m sure it will be a special occasion for him. I have no doubt JP, being as popular a player as he is to this group, a lot of the players will want to do well for him as well.”

    White has made no changes to the starting team that defeated the Reds last week, but did change two on the bench.

    Heimar Williams goes into the Vodacom Cup team for game time and Tim Swiel has been named as his replacement. Andre Esterhuizen replaces Jaco van Tonder, and whichever player does come on will feature in his first match at Super Rugby level.

    The Bulls have a formidable record at Loftus and like the Sharks are unbeaten at home this season. Much rests on the outcome of Saturday’s derby clash as the battle for the South African conference hots up.

    Kick-off is at 19:10 on Saturday.



    15 Jurgen Visser, 14 Sampie Mastriet, 13 J J Engelbrecht, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Dewald Potgieter, 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Victor Matfield, 4 Flip vd Merwe (captain), 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Callie Visagie, 1 Dean Greyling

    Substitutes: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Marcel vd Merwe, 18 Paul Willemse, 19 Jono Ross, 20 Piet van Zyl, 21 Handré Pollard, 22 Ulrich Beyers, 23 Morné Mellet


    15. SP Marais, 14. JP Pietersen, 13. S’bura Sithole, 12. Frans Steyn, 11. Lwazi Mvovo, 10. Patrick Lambie, 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. Tendai Mtawarira

    Substitutes: 16. Kyle Cooper, 17. Dale Chadwick, 18. Lourens Adriaanse, 19. Etienne Oosthuizen, 20. Tera Mtembu, 21. Charl McLeod, 22. Tim Swiel, 23. Andre Esterhuizen

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