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Birthday joy for du Preez twins


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks on 5 Aug 2015 at 09:42
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , , , ,

Jean-Luc du Preez celebrates his 20th birthday today with the added surprise of being named for his first senior Sharks start; the blonde flanker will wear the number 7 shirt against the Pumas in Friday night’s Currie Cup opener.

Twin brother Daniel, who already has a number of Super Rugby caps from earlier this year, is also in line for a Currie Cup debut, named to shadow his brother on the bench. (In an amazing coincidence, it’s his birthday today too!)

As predicted, Gary Gold has stuck with the exact pack that started last week’s warm-up game against the Lions. Monde Hadebe is at hooker, in-between experienced props Dale Chadwick and Lourens Adriaanse. Etienne Oosthuizen will be the enforcer at 4, with Marco Wentzel captaining the side from his familiar 5-lock position. Khaya Majola and newcomer Philip van der Walt complete the loose trio.

If the pack resembles the unit picked to start last week, then the backline looks a lot more like the unit that finished that game. Stefan Ungerer wins the initial race for the scrumhalf jersey and will start alongside Lionel Cronje, reuniting a halfback pairing that showed some promise towards the latter stages of Super Rugby. Heimar Williams and debutant Wandi Mjekevu are the centers, while Andre Esterhuizen is a somewhat surprising pick at left wing. S’bura Sithole operates on the right, with Joe Pietersen earning his first Sharks Currie cup cap at fullback.

Thomas du Toit and Franco Marais are the front row replacements, with a 5-man forward bench making room for both Dave McDuling and Francois Kleinhans to join the other du Preez. Micahel Claassens and SP Marais are the backline reserves.

Sharks:
15 Joe Pietersen, 14 Sibusiso Sithole, 13 Wandile Mjekevu, 12 Heimar Williams, 11 Andre Esterhuizen, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Khaya Majola, 5 Marco Wentzel (captain), 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Monde Hadebe, 1 Dale Chadwick
Subs: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Thomas du Toit, 18 David McDuling, 19 Daniel du Preez, 20 Francois Kleinhans, 21 Michael Claassens, 22 SP Marais



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