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    Marshall back at fullback for Sharks clash

    2016-05-05 10:11

    Cape Town - James Marshall's return at fullback is the only change to the Hurricanes starting XV for Saturday’s Super Rugby match against the Sharks in Durban.

    Marshall, who had sat out three matches due to concussion, made a successful return to Super Rugby via the bench during the Hurricanes’ 50-17 win over the Lions in Johannesburg last weekend.

    The 27-year-old utility back had been the Hurricanes’ preferred No 15 against the Highlanders, Blues, Force and Kings before Jason Woodward took over at fullback against the Jaguares, Rebels, Chiefs and Lions.

    Against the Sharks, Woodward will be part of a reshuffled reserves bench featuring the return of prop Ben May, lock Mark Abbott and midfielder Ngani Laumape.

    May, who had been resting a sore neck, comes into the squad for Loni Uhila, Abbott replaces loose forward Callum Gibbins, while Laumape provides midfield cover in place of Willis Halaholo.

    The midfield of Vince Aso and Matt Proctor is retained for the fourth week in a row and locks Michael Fatialofa and Vaea Fifita start together in an unchanged forward pack.

    Hurricanes head coach Chris Boyd said there continued to be healthy competition for places throughout the squad.

    "We are in a good spot in terms of having a fully fit squad to choose from and there are a number of players putting real pressure on for starting spots," Boyd said.

    "That makes it tough each week to select the team, but that's exactly what we want at this stage of the season.

    "It's really important that we maintain the level of performance we produced against the Lions because if we don't I know we will be in for a tough afternoon in Durban.

    "The Sharks are extremely tough at home and they are a side that can hurt you up front or out wide. They present a massive challenge."

    Teams:

    Sharks

    15 Willie le Roux, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12, Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, Garth April, 9 Michael Claassen, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Keegan Daniel, 5 Stephen Lewies, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Tendai Mtawarira (captain)

    Substitutes: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 Dale Chadwick, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Jean Deysel, 21 Stefan Ungerer, 22 Pat Lambie, 23 Odwa Ndungane

    Hurricanes

    15 James Marshall, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Vince Aso, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Michael Fatialofa, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 2 Dane Coles (captain), 1 Reg Goodes

    Substitutes: 16 Motu Matu'u, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Ben May, 19 Mark Abbott, 20 Blade Thomson, 21 Jamison Gibson-Park, 22 Ngani Laumape, 23 Jason Woodward

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    Fixtures

    Saturday, 17 February 2018
    • Stormers v Jaguares, Cape Town 15:05
    • Lions v Sharks, Emirates Airlines Park 17:15
    Friday, 23 February 2018
    • Highlanders v Blues, 08:35
    • Rebels v Reds, AAMI Park 10:45
    Saturday, 24 February 2018
    • Sunwolves v Brumbies, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium 06:15
    • Crusaders v Chiefs, 08:35
    • Waratahs v Stormers, Allianz Stadium 10:45
    • Lions v Jaguares, Emirates Airlines Park 15:05
    • Bulls v Hurricanes, Loftus Versfeld 17:15

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