Butch, Ludik in Sharks midfield
Durban - Butch James
and Louis Ludik will link up in the midfield for the Sharks in their clash with the Blues at Kings Park on Saturday (14:50 kick-off), reports the Sharks website
The Sharks starting XV includes 12 Springboks, with hooker Bismarck du Plessis named on the bench alongside scrumhalf Cobus Reinach
who is also returning from injury.
The Blues are a dangerous side, chasing a top six finish and will no doubt be looking to give it their all against a Sharks side determined to show what they are capable of.
“The Blues have always had a willingness to play from all areas of the field and if you look at the players they have - certainly in the backline - they have x-factor players all over the field,” said Sharks assistant coach Grant Bashford. “They are a handful with the right ball so we need to stunt them and limit them quality ball, deny them gain-line quick ball.”
He added that like all sides who analyse the opposition, there are areas they will target in an attempt to disrupt the visiting side.
“Their lineout hasn’t functioned as well as they would have liked at times this year, their scrum has also put them under a bit of pressure. We have areas we would like to put them under pressure, but that’s the case with every team you play. It won’t be a surprise to them in any way.
“For us, it’s about regrouping really quickly and trying to finish this campaign on a high.”
15. Riaan Viljoen, 14. Odwa Ndungane
, 13. Louis Ludik, 12. Butch James
, 11. Lwazi Mvovo, 10. Patrick Lambie
, 9. Charl McLeod, 8. Keegan Daniel
(captain), 7. Willem Alberts
, 6. Marcell Coetzee
, 5. Franco van der Merwe, 4. Edwin Hewitt, 3. Jannie du Plessis, 2. Kyle Cooper, 1. Tendai Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16. Bismarck du Plessis, 17. Daniel Mienie / Wiehahn Herbst, 18. Jandre Marais, 19. Jean Deysel, 20. Jacques Botes, 21. Cobus Reinach
, 22. Jaco van TonderBlues:
15. Charles Piutau, 14. Frank Halai, 13. Jackson Willison, 12. Francis Saili, 11. George Moala, 10. Chris Noakes, 9. Piri Weepu, 8. Peter Saili, 7. Luke Braid, 6. Steven Luatua, 5. Ali Williams (captain), 4. Anthony Boric, 3. Angus Ta’avao, 2. James Parsons, 1. Tim Perry
Substitutes: 16. Keven Mealamu, 17. Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 18. Kane Barrett / Culum Retallick, 19. Brendon O’Connor, 20. Jamison Gibson-Park, 21.Baden Kerr, 22. Rene Ranger