Esterhuizen, Am starting to click for Sharks
Durban - Sharks centre Andre Esterhuizen believes he is starting to build a strong understanding with midfield partner Lukhanyo Am.
While Esterhuizen has built up a reputation over the past couple of seasons as one of the strongest runners in the country, Am is enjoying a breakthrough season with the Sharks this year having put in some impressive performances in the opening three rounds of Super Rugby fixtures.
Esterhuizen and Am have started all of those matches together at 12 and 13, respectively, but the combination may be temporarily put on hold this week with the Sharks expected to rest a number of first-choice players for their clash against the Kings in Durban on Saturday.
The pair also played together for most of last year's Currie Cup, but Esterhuizen believes they are only now starting to gel.
"Luke (Lukhanyo) is a very good player. He came back last year for the Currie Cup and since then we've been playing together and it's been nice," Esterhuizen said.
"We're only now starting to find each other. He is a great guy to have in your team and he's working really hard.
"If we didn't play that Currie Cup together we wouldn't be where we are now. He knows what I'm going to do and I know what he's going to do and it makes it a lot better."
Am has impressed with ball in hand as well as on defence, while Esterhuizen has picked up where he left off in 2016.
One of the form centres in South Africa last year, a path to the Springbok set-up for the 22-year-old Esterhuizen still looks a difficult one with the likes of Rohan Janse van Rensburg and Damian de Allende (currently injured) being favoured.
"Hopefully we as a team can go far in this competition and if the team does well that's when you get seen. I think everyone's goal is to be selected for the Springboks and we're all working hard for that. Hopefully one day I can achieve that," he said.
"It's been a great start of the season for us but it's still the beginning and there is a long way to go. The guys are looking positive."
Saturday's match kicks off at 19:30.