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Esterhuizen receives the call


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks on 10 Sep 2014 at 14:11
Tagged with : , , , , , , ,

All talk of playing flank seemingly forgotten, Andre Esterhuizen makes his Currie Cup debut for the Sharks at inside centre against the Cheetahs this week.

The coaches have reacted to Saturday’s loss against Griquas by dropping flyhalf Fred Zeilinga – who admittedly did have a poor game – but retaining Conrad Hoffmann, who was, if anything, worse. Lionel Cronje will earn a first Sharks Currie cup start at flyhalf and form a new attacking axis with Esterhuizen. Paul Jordaan, another player who has failed to spark in recent weeks, is given a complete rest, with S’bura Sithole moving back to his best position, outside centre.

Tonderai Chavhanga returns at left wing, with Tim Swiel also earning a maiden start – at fullback – in the final change to a completely rejigged backline that sees only Hoffmann and Odwa Ndungane start in the same positions as last week. Heimar Williams and Jaco van Tonder both drop out, despite being among the less disappointing backs against Griquas.

Up front, Dale Chadwick starts at loosehead, taking over from Thomas du Toit, while Marco Wentzel comes in at lock for the injured Wiehan Hay. The loose trio is an area of rare stability, with Etienne Oosthuizen afforded another opportunity to develop at blind side flank.

On the bench, Thomas du Toit will be asked to cover both sides of the scrum – a risky move, but one necessitated by injury to Matt Stevens. Johan Meyer will cover the second row, with another debutant, Khaya Majola, handed the number 19 jersey. Majola, a product of Westville Boys High, has represented the Sharks at every age group level and will relish an opportunity to finally earn a senior cap.

Zeilinga and SP Marais join Cameron Wright as the backline reserves.

Sharks: 15 Tim Swiel, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 S’bura Sithole, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Tonderai Chavhanga, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Conrad Hoffmann, 8 Tera Mtembu (capt), 7 Etienne Oosthuizen, 6 Jacques Botes, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Marco Wentzel, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Kyle Cooper, 1 Dale Chadwick.
Reserves: 16 Monde Hadebe, 17 Thomas du Toit, 18 Johan Meyer, 19 Khaya Majola, 20 Cameron Wright, 21 Fred Zeilinga, 22 SP Marais.



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