Sharks pick Smit at loosehead

2011-04-07 12:13

Durban - Although there have not been any wholesale changes to the Sharks team to host the Lions in Durban on Saturday, coach John Plumtree has made a couple of rotational, as well as one enforced change to his side.

According to Sharks website editor Mike Marnewick, the front row sees two changes with John Smit starting at loosehead and captaining the side with Tendai Mtawarira named among the replacements while Eugene van Staden, after some impressive performances off the bench, gets his first start of the season.

Jannie du Plessis who has started six of the first seven matches gets a well-earned break and will, like “Beast”, get an opportunity later in the game.

The only other change to the starting line-up comes in the second row with Gerhard Mostert starting for the injured Alistair Hargreaves who has a hairline fracture of his AC joint. Mostert’s elevation to a starting berth means an opportunity for Ross Skeate who returns to the side after a lengthy absence that goes back to August of last year’s Currie Cup.

The Lions come to Durban without history on their side, having last beaten the Sharks in this competition in Bloemfontein in 2001. The Sharks have nine wins over the Lions (and Cats) in the last 10 years with one match drawn, but this is a new challenge, a new year and past results count for very little.

As coach John Plumtree said this week, “Our attitude, our desire, our want has got to be way more than theirs  the boys... how important this week is.”



15. Louis Ludik, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. Stefan Terblanche, 12. Meyer Bosman, 11. JP Pietersen, 10. Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9. Charl McLeod, 8. Ryan Kankowski, 7. Willem Alberts, 6. Keegan Daniel, 5. Gerhard Mostert, 4. Steven Sykes, 3. Eugene van Staden, 2. Bismarck du Plessis, 1. John Smit (captain)

Substitutes: 16. Tendai Mtawarira, 17. Jannie du Plessis, 18. Ross Skeate, 19. Jacques Botes, 20. Conrad Hoffmann, 21. Adrian Jacobs, 22. Lwazi Mvovo



  • Gilgamesh - 2011-04-07 12:19

    please have a good game John, please. GO SHARKS!

      mummford - 2011-04-07 12:48

      I agree with you.He has done so much for S.A Rugby and then you get these low life filth below!!

      PJ - 2011-04-07 13:05

      JS should realize now that his time is over. I mean there is no way in hell that anyone will convince me that he still deserves a spot in the Sharks starting line-up or in the Bok 22. Involve the man with training or whatever at the Boks but not as a player. Thanks John but it is time to go mate.

      pop101 - 2011-04-07 14:08

      Gavin Smith....he, he..... ha ha.....bwahahahaha

      kosie - 2011-04-07 15:08

      @ the emperor. Mate its Greame Smith and John SMIT. please do not comment if you don't even know what the players names are.

      JohnnyBB - 2011-04-07 15:13

      ....John Smit = non-merit player... ........weakest link in Sharks front-row..!!

      GILLBERT - 2011-04-07 15:23

      john and old snorra is gonna cost us the world cup

  • Supapaul - 2011-04-07 12:22

    Useless Smit... retire please old fart!!!

      Chilli Boy - 2011-04-07 13:16

      And you think you are the super trooper? John Smit is a legend - give him credit, he has earned it. Do you really think he wants to play loosehead? De Villiers wants him playing hooker, Plumtree disagrees.Find out why before you shout a great player down.John Smit is an absolute gentleman,but he would look right through you for the chop that you are.

      milswanka - 2011-04-07 13:23

      Hey Supafag...stop being so insulting, rugby is a sport for enjoyment and the way that you are grunting about I can swear the world is coming to an end tomorrow!!

      Gorilla - 2011-04-07 13:24

      Have some respect. You may not deserve it but no matter how Smitty is playing, he certainly has earned it.

      JohnnyBB - 2011-04-07 15:15

      Chilli Boy, .........John Smit WAS a legend... ......way past his sell-by date...!!!

      Chadwick - 2011-04-08 07:38

      Show some respect. I bet you if he was playing well he'd be your hero. But as soon as you're done with him you treat him like krap. Supatrash.

  • DUANEROCKS - 2011-04-07 12:23

    This saddens me more and more.....the great man reduced to this.

      Kapa_O_Pango - 2011-04-07 13:22

      You can say that again my friend...

      JohnnyBB - 2011-04-07 15:16

      ...his own fault.... ...he should have retired long ago.....

  • GHT - 2011-04-07 12:29

    Plumtree is destroying Smit's reputation. Everybody will soon forget the good he has done for us and just remember how crap he played in his twilight years because Plums insist on playing him at prop.

      Legend77 - 2011-04-07 13:13

      Well he is not good enough to lift Bismark out of the team. Think he is lucky to be in the team at all

      kosie - 2011-04-07 15:13

      he is lucky to be there. i will play burden of the bench as hooker. smit won't even make the team anymore. agree he has done a lot for SA rugby. not much for sharks rugby though. the only reason he is there is because pdv insists he must play, and the only place the sharks can make for him is at prop of the bench. he starting this weekend becasue the lions scrumming isn't that good. if he struggles this weekend then there won't be any space.

      JohnnyBB - 2011-04-07 15:17

      True GHT...!!!

  • Potyster - 2011-04-07 12:30

    Look on the bright side, the more he plays prop the less likelier it is that Snorre will make the same mistake.

      JohnnyBB - 2011-04-07 15:21

      ......with PDV, anything is possible.... ....he will play John Smit at fullback....

  • rugby_guru - 2011-04-07 12:36

    Lets see what happens, exciting day of rugby :D

  • Marx - 2011-04-07 12:42

    John, please step down, SA rugby, stop trying to ride a dead horse, retire and go spend time with your family.

      mummford - 2011-04-07 12:48

      Marx..i think its also time for you to step down.All the best mate!

  • Kapa_O_Pango - 2011-04-07 12:57

    DAMN!!! Sies John Plumtree...

      kosie - 2011-04-07 15:16

      go kap a panga somewhere else mate. do you honestly think he is better than bismark.

  • Aldrich - 2011-04-07 12:59

    Poor John Smit - SA rugby's new shifting spanner ......

  • WIllie Botha - 2011-04-07 13:04

    Right behind you Smitty! Go Sharks! Time to shine... Sharks Forever!

  • rugby_guru - 2011-04-07 13:05

    I have a feeling John will do well this weekend, lets see :D

      molefeP - 2011-04-07 13:25

      I hope so for your sakes buddy.

  • Bulldozer - 2011-04-07 13:12

    Go Bulls!!! Go Sharks!!! Go Reds!!!

      JohnnyBB - 2011-04-07 15:18

      .....GO REDS...!!!!

  • Balsakhater - 2011-04-07 13:17

    His time is past, needs to leave with dignity. Lots better young players knocking at he door.

      kosie - 2011-04-07 15:17

      quit while his ahead....

  • The Observer - 2011-04-07 13:24

    Go Lions!!!!!!!

      The Observer - 2011-04-07 13:24

      And Go Reds!!!!!!

  • molefeP - 2011-04-07 13:24

    John Smit deserves better than this. He is just not keeping up with the modern game anymore. And with what he has given South African rugby he should be allowed to retire gracefully. Not be made the whipping boy for all the Sharks scrum problems!

      watalife - 2011-04-07 13:42

      Agree molefe, he should bow out now before he is remembered for the wrong reasons.

  • Raka13 - 2011-04-07 13:25

    John Smit will make a come back of note, he is a brilliant rugby player and sportsman!!!!

      DUANEROCKS - 2011-04-07 14:05

      I really hope so! He has done it before....defied the critics. The problem is: How on earth can he find any sort of hooking form, if he is being played at loosehead? So he is in a really cr@ppy situation. And he DOESN'T deserve it.....Plumtree and P Divvy need a bi@tchslap.

      kosie - 2011-04-07 15:19

      bismark is better so you can't play john at hooker

      DUANEROCKS - 2011-04-07 15:47

      @Kosie - I know Bissie is better.....I think Burden is also better...BUT: thats what is so sad about the position John is in - thats what I meant. The 2 coaches are at loggerheads as to what John must do and not do....he is in the middle. Whilst he isn't the player he was, the man still does not deserve this type of "treatment". They should have sorted the John Smit issue out before the S15 its just getting sad - and for what the man has given this country, one has to feel for him. Thats all.

      jan du preeaz - 2011-04-07 17:48

      bwaa hhaa haa, this dude is so way past his sell by date he makes Hasbeenhana look like the rugby player of the decade!

  • milswanka - 2011-04-07 13:27

    I wish I could have said this with more enthusiasm but here goes: !!!!!!!GO LIONS!!!!!!!!

  • dale.cronshey - 2011-04-07 13:39

    Who needs PVD advice, as he know f all about rugby anyway. He is just there because of BBBEE

  • Anneleen - 2011-04-07 13:46

    Kaptein, span die seile....GO SHARKS...SHARKS FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      watalife - 2011-04-07 14:03

      Brits is having its affect on you,you should move.

      jan du preeaz - 2011-04-07 17:49

      moet jy jou naels of iets gaan doen nie?

  • André - 2011-04-07 14:07

    @ TheEmperor.. I am still strugling to find out who the hell Gavin Smith is. You were not perhaps refering to Graeme Smith? If I were you who do not even know the players I would rather keep out of this! All I can say is "Watch the Sharks" this weekend!!! Go Sharks from an Eastern Cape supporter!!

  • Bielie - 2011-04-07 14:09

    The Lions will probably get whacked big time, but I'm still shouting for them :)

      molefeP - 2011-04-07 19:42


  • Bill - 2011-04-07 14:16

    John Smit, the Captain of Captains. Probably the best captain in international rugby in the last decade if not longer and possibly the best SA has ever had. Not a bad hooker either. But Father Time has caught up with you, and you are doing SA rugby and yourself a disservice by wanting another year and another World Cup tournament. Go now, before you tarnish your shining image and end up a sad memory of yourself. There is room for you at the top of the game, you could be a great manager for the Boks, even perhaps coaching one day, but do yourself the favour of quitting now, before it is too late.

  • doodledee - 2011-04-07 14:25

    When can we expect Lambie to come back??????

      Kapa_O_Pango - 2011-04-07 15:04

      Next week...

      kosie - 2011-04-07 15:21

      after the bye weekend.

  • Anneleen - 2011-04-07 15:29

    Still sticking to my guns....GO SHARKS!!!!!!!!!!

  • Sean Looney - 2011-04-07 16:00

    south african fans make me embarrased to call myself south african! john smit is a legend, in his prime one of the best hookers in the world. he is still the best and most successful captain in the world and he deserves respect! saying that i dont think he merits his place in the sharks or springboks starting line-up anymore... he should be used off the bench or in an ambassadorial role like david beckham was for england in the fifa world cup. he still has a lot of influence in the dressing room and players look up to him which is going to be vital when it comes to the world cup!

      Lloyd - 2011-04-07 16:10

      Jy is kak lelik.

      jan du preeaz - 2011-04-07 17:51

      no, he should leave springbok rugby alone alltogether

  • GC - 2011-04-07 16:21

    all this moaning about John Smit but what about Jacques-Louis Potgieter?? I reckon he has cost the Sharks at least 1 if not both of the last 2 games. Its pretty bad management that you dont have quality cover for your kicker, never mind that the only flair we have in the back line is Lambie, with him out the back line looks flat footed.

      jan du preeaz - 2011-04-07 17:51

      Nou waar val jy uit met JLP jou aap?

  • Henry - 2011-04-07 17:55

    He will only face Pat Cilliers. No great test. They know Pat. The Sharks will be thinking that even John Smit should overcome him

      Henry - 2011-04-07 17:57

      Even Eugene van Staden on tighthead. They must not underestimate the Lions. The have just placed their frontrow on the some level as the Lions.

  • CliffBradley - 2011-04-07 23:38

    Ag for Heaven sake! Smit still playing? What about choosing Frik du Preez and Mannetjies Roux as well??

  • sessisie - 2011-04-08 07:38

    Please Get rid of John Smit

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