CAPE TOWN – Springbok utility back Dillyn Leyds has been slotted straight back into the Western Province starting line-up for Friday’s big Currie Cup clash against the Golden Lions at Newlands (7pm kickoff).
Leyds was part of the Rugby Championship squad, but was strangely released by Bok coach Allister Coetzee on Tuesday, along with four other players – Oupa Mohoje, Francois Venter, Lizo Gqoboka and Warrick Gelant – ahead of Saturday’s clash against Argentina in Port Elizabeth.
The 24-year-old game-breaker was in outstanding form for the Stormers during Super Rugby, and featured off the bench for the Boks against France in June.
But now having hardly been given a fair chance to prove himself at Test level, he has been axed for the meantime and won’t make the short trip to Argentina next week either.
However, it does significantly strengthen a WP backline that may be viewed as a more dangerous combination in many respects than what even the Boks could put together at the moment.
Apart from Leyds and in-form young flyhalf Damian Willemse, the wise hand of Jano Vermaak brings a sense of calmness to an enthusiastic line-up that includes classy Scotland Test centre Huw Jones – who was excellent in his return from injury against the Bulls last week – hard-running No 13 EW Viljoen, the jet-shoes of Seabelo Senatla at right wing and the consistent SP Marais at fullback.
In the pack, WP coach John Dobson has handed a WP debut to flank Cobus Wiese, who did play for the Stormers this year, in place of Kobus van Dyk, while Leyds replaces the injured Bjorn Basson at left wing.
Western Province Team
15 SP Marais, 14 Seabelo Senatla, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Huw Jones, 11 Dillyn Leyds, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Cobus Wiese, 6 Jaco Coetzee, 5 JD Schickerling, 4 Chris van Zyl (captain), 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Bench: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Michael Kumbirai, 19 Eddie Zandberg, 20 Steph de Wit, 21 Dewaldt Duvenage, 22 Dan Kriel.