Mtawarira returns for Sharks

2012-05-03 09:15

Durban - Crowd-favourite, loosehead prop Tendai “Beast” Mtawarira, will make his much-awaiting return to the Sharks when he fronts up for Saturday’s Vodacom Super Rugby match against the Highlanders in Durban, according to Sharks website editor Michael Marnewick.

Mtawarira has had a lengthy spell out of the game after an ankle injury sustained during the pre-season build-up to the tournament, and after two games for the Sharks XV, is now fit and available for the Sharks.

Despite picking a vastly experienced Sharks side, coach John Plumtree warns that the Highlanders bring plenty of experience and aggression to the table themselves.

“We must make sure we kick accurately and our contestable kicking is accurate so we can get under those high balls because the Highlanders are more than just a counter-attacking side, they’re aggressive upfront and they have lots of experience.

“They’re a well-balanced side with heaps of X-factor. They have players who have been around for a long time and that’s one of the reasons why they’re doing well - they’re an experienced side - Jamie Joseph has assembled a good team.”

The Sharks side named also features a few other changes. John Plumtree will - together with the medical staff - make a late call on Jannie du Plessis who took a knock in the Chiefs game, and he will certainly play a role, whether in the starting line-up or off the bench, with Wiehahn Herbst set to share the tighthead duties.

Marcell Coetzee is back in the starting line-up after playing off the bench against the Chiefs and he will partner Keegan Daniel and Jacques Botes who starts his second game in succession.

Among the backs, the Sharks coach has made an interesting selection, the hugely-exciting Paul Jordaan named at outside centre after featuring in the first three games of the tournament off the bench. This means a rotational change with JP Pietersen shifted to wing and Louis Ludik moving to fullback.

Plumtree has gone with a 5-2 split on the bench, with Pieter-Steph du Toit, Jean Deysel and a returning Ryan Kankowski all providing cover in the second and back row, with Frederic Michalak and Meyer Bosman the backline replacements.


15 Louis Ludik, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Tim Whitehead, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie,9 Charl McLeod, 8 Keegan Daniel (captain ), 7 Marcell Coetzee, 6 Jacques Botes, 5 Anton Bresler, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Jannie du Plessis / Wiehahn Herbst, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Wiehahn Herbst / Jannie du Plessis, 18 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 19 Jean Deysel, 20 Ryan Kankowski, 21 Frederic Michalak, 22 Meyer Bosman




  • Marcel - 2012-05-03 09:37

    now that is a better backline, thank you

      Johan - 2012-05-04 12:16

      i agree 100%!!!!

  • CharlesDumbwin - 2012-05-03 09:40

    Please guppies, just don't choke this time, please? They should win this, by 5+

  • Sarge - 2012-05-03 09:54

    Why does he persist with Michalak? Where is Viljoen?

  • Sydney Luger Masalethulini - 2012-05-03 09:55

    Beast z back the guppie sharkies must win dis one !

  • patrickjasoncawood - 2012-05-03 09:59

    Like the team, JP has looked lost at centre. Lets hope this is the start to something special, we need it!!

  • Steve - 2012-05-03 10:06

    Not sure about McLeod, he is just taking far to long to get the ball out. The result is the players running onto the ball have no speed or space!? If he is not doing well, I would get Michalak in there ASAP!

  • Ryan - 2012-05-03 10:52

    sharks suck! I can't wait for Stormers to buy Pat Lambie and stick him on the bench.

      Marcel - 2012-05-03 11:23

      they will,15 years from now, good luck on waiting

      Reinie - 2012-05-03 11:26

      Not going to happen mate! Stormers have about 5 no10`s on the books. Pat is a Natalian!

      malcolm.molver - 2012-05-03 12:49

      Ryan did you have your meds today? Lambie is too young for the Stormers. You idiots still need to wait a good ten years for that possibility. Even then I doubt it. He's a born and bred KwaZulu-Natalian. He won't leave!

      marko.miladinovic.52 - 2012-05-04 06:43

      Goodness Ryan, you are a sour puss. Go comment on your Stormers reports and leave this page for the people who are supporting the Beast on his return back to big rugby. Bull greatings.

  • Acta - 2012-05-03 12:00

    Hope Ryan and Jean get some proper game time. Go sharks!!

  • Japjapjap - 2012-05-03 12:23

    weepee gaan hulle gatte sien, di' naweek- groot pakslae oppad......

  • Maxine - 2012-05-03 12:52

    That's a good shuffle something had to change

  • Sharksfever - 2012-05-03 13:13

    Now for the first time this year that backline looks good. Cannot wait to see Jordaan play a full game. I would have started with Kanko at 8 and Keegan at 6. But the team looks good. GO SHARKS!!!

  • Willie - 2012-05-04 06:09

    Glad the "Beast" is back from injury. Hope all goes injury free and well from hereon.

  • marko.miladinovic.52 - 2012-05-04 06:37

    Go Beast, hope you make a good return to rugby. Also hope to see you in the Bok jersey in a few weeks time. Bull greatings.

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