Sharks will field brand new second row against Lions
DURBAN - The Sharks will have a brand new second row for their crucial Currie Cup visit to the Lions on Saturday, with coach Sean Everitt giving a break to the much-played duo of Hyron Andrews and Ruben van Heerden.
One of the places is taken by JJ van der Mescht, who has had a fair amount of game time this season, even starting against the Pumas on the flank when the Sharks were heavily hit by Covid.
There is a debut in the No 5 jersey for a newcomer to the Sharks, Ashton Fortuin, formerly of the Bulls and ore recently of the Southern Kings. The 114kg Fortuin adds bulk and strength to the pack in tandem with the 120 kg Van der Mescht.
Kerron van Vuuren is back as the starting hooker for the injured Dan Jooste with the impressive Michael Kumbirai named as the tighthead prop after the loss of Thomas du Toit to a rib injury sustained in the Sharks’ 32-29 victory over the Bulls in Durban last week.
Returning to the match-23 and playing off the bench are front row replacements Fez Mbatha, Mzamo Majola and John Hubert-Meyer, while loose forward James Venter is also back after missing recent action.
The Sharks’ backline is unchanged.
Sharks team: 15 Manie Libbok 14 Sbu Nkosi 13 Lukhanyo Am 12 Marius Louw 11 Yaw Penxe 10 Curwin Bosch 9 Sanele Nohamba 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe 7 Henco Venter 6 Dylan Richardson 5 Ashton Fortuin 4 JJ van der Mescht 3 Michael Kumberai 2 Kerron van Vuuren 1 Ox Nche.
Substitutes: Fez Mbatha, Mzamo Majola, John-Hubert Meyer, Thembelani Bholi, James Venter, Phepsi Buthelezi, Jaden Hendrikse, Jeremy Ward.