Bloemfontein - The Free State Cheetahs are targeting the struggling Sharks to improve their current position on the overall standings in their Currie Cup encounter at the Free State Stadium on Saturday.
After two consecutive losses, the Durban outfit is lying fourth on the points log, while the Cheetahs are in fifth place, two points behind them.
"The Sharks' current lack of form and their two losses is positive in the sense that we can use their lack of momentum against them, and in the process better our position," Cheetahs coach Rory Duncan said.
"On the other hand, it can also be negative for us, because it will motivate them more. I know the Sharks, as I have played there myself. Brad McLeod-Henderson will be pushing his guys to collect a win against us."
The Cheetahs have made changes their backline, hoping fullback Rayno Benjamin and winger JP du Plessis will add spice to their attack.
"Rayno is a very special player who has played a lot of sevens rugby. He is going to add another dimension to our attacks from the back," assistant coach Franco Smith said.
"JP is fairly unknown and that plays into our hands. His opposite player, Tonderai Chavhanga, sometimes struggles on defence and we hope JP can challenge him on the attack. He is a big boy with quick feet and good running lines. We are looking for a good performance from him."
McLeod-Henderson said his side had not performed well over the last couple of weeks, and they wanted to rectify that against the Cheetahs.
"We want to get back to winning ways, there is no doubt about that. We have worked hard in the build up to the game and hopefully we will produce a good performance," he said.
"We know it is going to be very tough against the Cheetahs. They are always physical at home. And they have a guy like Sarel Pretorius at scrumhalf. He is a game breaker and we will have to watch him very carefully."
Free State Cheetahs:
15 Rayno Benjamin, 14 Maputha Dolo, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Joubert Engelbrecht, 11 JP du Plessis, 10 Willie du Plessis, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Lappies Labuschagne, 7 Neil Claassen, 6 Tienie Burger, 5 Francois Uys, 4 Henco Venter, 3 George Marich, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld (captain), 1 Caylib Oosthuizen.
Substitutes: 16 AJ le Roux, 17 Rudolph Botha, 18 Werner Lourens, 19 Vincent Jobo, 20 Shaun Venter, 21 Pieter-Steyn de Wet, 22 AJ Coertzen
15. Tim Swiel, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. S'bura Sithole, 12. Andre Esterhuizen, 11. Tonderai Chavhanga, 10. Lionel Cronje, 9. Conrad Hoffmann, 8. Tera Mtembu (captain), 7. Etienne Oosthuizen, 6. Jacques Botes, 5. Stephan Lewies, 4. Marco Wentzel, 3. Lourens Adriaanse, 2. Kyle Cooper, 1. Dale Chadwick
Substitutes: 16. Monde Hadebe, 17. Thomas du Toit, 18. Johan Meyer, 19. Khaya Majola, 20. Cameron Wright, 21. Fred Zeilinga, 22. SP Marais