Explosive front row battle on the cards for Durban
Cape Town - When the Sharks and the Stormers meet, the result is almost always a physical, uncompromising encounter.
That is set to be the case once more at Kings Park on Saturday, and you don't have to look further than the front row to understand why.
With the pedigree on display, it is set to be a titanic struggle for supremacy between the two Springbok-laden packs.
The Sharks are likely to field Bok props Tendai Mtawarira and Coenie Oosthuizen while the Stormers have the options of Wilco Louw or Frans malherbe at tighthead and Ali Vermaak at loosehead.
Malherbe started this past weekend's 19-17 win against the Lions at Newlands with Louw out injured and will be favoured to do so once again against the Sharks.
That could see Malherbe and Oosthuizen, both now fully fit after lengthy injury lay-offs, given the platform to put their hands up for the No 3 Springbok jersey in a match that matters.
"We will have to be at our best to counter those boys," Malherbe said of the Sharks front row.
"Coenie is a respected guy and he has been playing for a long time. We is a very experienced prop. We'll have to do our analysing in the week and if he plays we will have to be up for it.
"It's going to be a very big battle."
Kick-off is at 17:15.