WP change for Windhoek visit

2014-06-12 09:34
John Dobson (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Coach John Dobson has made a few adjustments to the Western Province team for Saturday's clash against Namibia at the Dr Hage Geingob Stadium (kick-off 13:00 SA time).

WP beat the Kenyan national team 32-28 in Nairobi last weekend and will now head to Windhoek to face the Namibian national side on their own turf.

"We had a lovely time in Kenya and were well looked after by our hosts for our entire stay," Dobson told the WP Rugby website.

"The guys showed a lot of character to pull through against the Simba XV, but I wasn't overly satisfied with our performance. After an interesting and fun trip to Kenya, the focus this week is entirely on the game and we have identified some areas to improve - most notably our breakdown."

The big changes to the WP line-up this week see Gary van Aswegen start at inside centre, newbcomer Tapiwa Tsomondo starting in the No 6 shirt, Ian Groenewald coming in at lock and hooker Neil Rautenbach replacing Stephan Coetzee in the No 2 jersey.

The new faces on the bench for the trip to Windhoek are back-up hooker Freddie Kirsten and inside centre Kyle Lombard.

Speaking about the changes, Dobson added: "We're particularly excited about the selection of (flanker) Tapiwa Tsomondo, who is still Under-21.

"Tapiwa is a product of our excellent amateur scouting system and he came to our attention via the WP Under-21 trials which were recently held. He is raw, but an exciting prospect and we're relishing the chance to work him and help him develop even more.

"He will play as our fetcher this week, but he also has excellent ball-carrying abilities and we look forward to seeing how he fares against someone like Rohan Kitshoff - whom, of course, we know very well at WP. As I said, the breakdown is an area we need to improve on and Tapiwa will have a role to play there.

"Gary van Aswegen (also) comes into the starting team (at inside centre) this week and will take over the captaincy from Rayn Smid too," explained the WP coach.

"Flyhalf and inside centre are interchangeable positions and Gary and Robert will take the pressure off each other in that crucial channel and add to our playmaking abilities."

Namibia will also take on the Bulls (on Saturday, June 21), before turning their attention to the Confederation of African Rugby Division 1A championships in Madagascar (ostensibly a RWC 2015 qualifying tournament), featuring the likes of Kenya, Madagascar and Zimbabwe.

Western Province team:

15. EW Viljoen, 14. JP Lewis, 13. Pat Howard, 12. Gary van Aswegen (captain), 11. Devon Williams, 10. Robert du Preez, 9. Dylon Frylinck, 8. Rayn Smid, 7. Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6. Tapiwa Tsomondo, 5. Jean Kleyn, 4. Ian Groenewald, 3. Justin Ackerman, 2. Neil Rautenbach, 1. Sti Sithole

Substitutes: 16. Freddie Kirsten, 17. Digby Webb, 18. Jan Uys, 19. Carel du Preez, 20. Ruan Vermaak, 21. Freddie Muller, 22. Kyle Lombard, 23. Craig Barry

Read more on:    wp  |  cape town  |  rugby

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