Durban – Odwa Ndungane will win his 100th Super Rugby cap for the Sharks after being retained on the wing in an unchanged starting XV for the clash against the Lions in Johannesburg on Saturday.
Sharks director of rugby Jake White resisted the temptation for change after the last win two weeks ago, an impressive 32-10
scoreline over the high-flying Waratahs, which was prior to a bye last weekend.
Fit-again centre Paul Jordaan was one option to return to the starting team, but was kept on the bench after over a month out with a knee injury.
His return among the substitutes is at the expense of Heimar Williams.
Springbok winger Lwazi Mvovo has been retained at fullback, while flanker Willem Alberts continues at lock.
“The most important aspect is the mental break this bye gave us,” White said.
“This tournament takes its toll and more so what's coming.
“We have eight weeks before our next break. Mentally, it was a good break for us and we all knew that mentally we had to take some time out because we're going to be under pressure in the next two months.”
Despite the bye, the Sharks remain top of the competition standings, two points clear of the Brumbies, with a game in hand.
Sharks team : Lwazi Mvovo, Odwa Ndungane, S'bura Sithole, Frans Steyn, JP Pietersen, Fred Zeilinga, Charl McLeod, Ryan Kankowski, Jean Deysel, Marcell Coetzee, Stephan Lewies, Willem Alberts, Jannie du Plessis, Bismarck du Plessis (capt), Tendai Mtawarira. Replacements: Kyle Cooper, Dale Chadwick, Lourens Adriaanse, Etienne Oosthuizen, Keegan Daniel, Stefan Ungerer, Paul Jordaan, SP Marais.– Sapa