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    Swys: I'll never 'chuck' Elton away

    2018-06-28 14:10

    Johannesburg - Lions coach Swys de Bruin has jumped to the defence of flyhalf Elton Jantjies, who had a tough outing for the Springboks in their 25-10 loss to England on Saturday.

    Jantjies was all at sea in terrible weather conditions at Newlands, forcing Bok coach Rassie Erasmus to substitute him before the hour-mark. 

    It was a performance that has seen Jantjies come in for heavy criticism, with many South African rugby followers calling time on the playmaker's international career. 

    But De Bruin, who worked with the Boks throughout the England series as a backline and attack consultant, has picked Jantjies at flyhalf for this Saturday's Super Rugby clash against the Sharks in Durban. 

    It is clear how highly De Bruin rates Jantjies, and he used his pre-match press conference on Thursday to back the under-fire pivot.

    "Elton is a true professional. There is a reason why he has played 100 games for this franchise and not many guys have achieved that," De Bruin said.

    "Elton has bounced back before. You can play flyhalf only with the ball you're getting.

    "It's very easy to blame Elton, but I went through the clips again (from the 3rd Test) and often he had to do a bit of wicketkeeping at a stage and it was a wet ball and so-on. He learnt a lot."

    According to De Bruin, Jantjies would not let one bad experience keep him down.

    "One thing about Elton is that he's resilient. He can take a shot and come back," said De Bruin.

    "He does a lot of boxing in his spare time and he's a fighter. He is an unreal team guy.

    "I have never subbed Elton and Ackers (Johan Ackermann, previous coach) didn't either. We have got so much faith in him and even if he has a bad game he plays through it.

    "Elton has done well for us and I won't chuck him out."

    Teams:

    Sharks

    15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Cameron Wright, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Phillip van der Walt, 5 Ruan Botha (captain), 4 Tyler Paul, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Akker van der Merwe, 1 Beast Mtawarira

    Substitutes: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Jacques Vermeulen, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Lwazi Mvovo

    Lions

    15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Marvin Orie, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Dylan Smith

    Substitutes: 16 Corne Fourie, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19, Lourens Erasmus, 20 Hacjivah Dayimani, 21 Marnus Schoeman, 22 Nic Groom, 23 Courtnall Skosan

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    Fixtures

    Friday, 31 January 2020
    • Blues v Chiefs, Eden Park 08:05
    • Brumbies v Reds, GIO Stadium 10:15
    • Sharks v Bulls, Jonsson Kings Park Stadium 19:10
    Saturday, 01 February 2020
    • Sunwolves v Rebels, Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium 05:45
    • Crusaders v Waratahs, Trafalgar Park 08:05
    • Stormers v Hurricanes, Cape Town 15:05
    • Jaguares v Lions, Estadio Jose Amalfitani 23:40
    Friday, 07 February 2020
    • Highlanders v Sharks, Forsyth Barr Stadium 08:05
    • Brumbies v Rebels, GIO Stadium 10:15

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