Cheetahs team to face Chiefs

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iol spt feb27 Cheetahs Gallo Images Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske has made one change to his starting line-up for his side's first overseas Super Rugby encounter against the Chiefs. Photo by Johan Pretorius

Johannesburg – Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske has made a single change to his starting line-up for his side's first overseas Super Rugby encounter on Saturday against the Chiefs in Hamilton.

Drotske has opted to include former Waratahs scrum-half Sarel Pretorius ahead of youngster Piet van Zyl, who is demoted to the replacement bench.

Pretorius played in the second half of the Cheetahs loss against the Sharks in Bloemfontein last weekend and he impressed, getting the nod ahead of Van Zyl.

“Sarel is an experienced scrum-half that will combine well with Johan Goosen. Experience will be vital against the Chiefs,” Drotske said.

In the only other change to the replacement bench, Griquas lock Ligtoring Landman comes in for the injured Waltie Vermeulen.

New Cheetahs flyhalf Elgar Watts has a torn hamstring and Riaan Smit comes onto the bench in his absence.

Griquas' newest flyhalf addition, Burton Francis, is on his way to Hamilton to join up with the Cheetahs there. He will serve as backup for Goosen and Smit.

Francis has played Super Rugby for the Bulls, Stormers and Lions and has vast experience, which will count in the Cheetahs' favour.

Cheetahs team: Hennie Daniller, Willie le Roux, Johann Sadie, Robert Ebersohn, Raymond Rhule, Johan Goosen, Sarel Pretorius, Philip van der Walt, Lappies Labuschagne, Frans Viljoen, Francois Uys, Lood de Jager, Lourens Adriaanse, Adriaan Strauss (captain), Trevor Nyakane.

Replacements: Ryno Barnes, Coenie Oosthuizen, Ligtoring Landman, Boom Prinsloo, Piet van Zyl, Riaan Smit, Ryno Benjamin Gerdie Karstens. – Sapa


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