Cape Town - Sharks Director of Rugby Gary
Gold has named his team for their Currie Cup opener against the Pumas in
Nelspruit on Friday (18:00 kick-off).
Marco Wentzel, who led the Sharks for large
parts during Super Rugby, will again captain the team.
New recruit, Joe Pietersen, who started at
No 10 in last week’s warm-up match against the Lions in Pietermartizburg, has
been shifted to fullback with Lionel Cronje given the No 10 jersey.
Stefan Ungerer has also been given a start
at scrumhalf ahead of former Springbok Michael Claassens.
Up front, new signing Philip van der Walt will
start in the No 8 jersey in a pack with a nice blend of youth and experience.
Speaking ahead of the match against the
Pumas, Gold commented: "We had a good pre-season and I am happy with the
composition of our team.
“There is some exciting young talent coming
through the ranks. Guys like Stefan Ungerer, Daniel and Jean-Luc du Preez,
Monde Hadebe, Franco Marais and Thomas du Toit will be given their
opportunities during the course of this campaign.
"The Pumas are a well-coached unit and
are coming off a high with their win in the Vodacom Cup competition. They are
always a tough prospect at home."
15. Joe Pietersen, 14. S’bura Sithole, 13.
Wandile Mjekevu, 12. Heimar Williams, 11. Andre Esterhuizen, 10. Lionel Cronje,
9. Stefan Ungerer, 8. Philip van der Walt, 7. Jean-Luc du Preez, 6. Khaya
Majola, 5. Marco Wentzel (captain), 4. Etienne Oosthuizen, 3. Lourens
Adriaanse, 2. Monde Hadebe, 1. Dale Chadwick
Substitutes: 16. Franco Marais, 17. Thomas
du Toit, 18. Dave McDuling, 19. Daniel du Preez, 20. Francois Kleinhans, 21.
Michael Claassens, 22. SP Marais