Siya Kolisi part of Sharks’ strong arsenal to face Stormers in Rainbow Cup SA opener
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Siya Kolisi will be on the openside flank for the Sharks when they tackle the Springbok captain’s former team, the Stormers, at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday (2pm kick-off) in the opening fixture of Rainbow Cup SA.
The Sharks have named a formidable side for what will be massive battle with a Stormers side that showed significant improvement to their attacking play in the recent Preparation Series. The Stormers, of course, also have a Springbok-laden pack of forwards that will include World Rugby Player of the Year for 2019, Pieter-Steph du Toit, who is making his comeback from serious injury.
Sharks coach Sean Everitt was able to pick a side that is close to full strength — the injury list is reasonably small, and includes flank James Venter and first choice inside centre Marius Louw, who is replaced by Jeremy Ward.
Interestingly, Everitt has chosen Grant Williams at scrumhalf ahead of last year’s incumbent Sanele Nohamba, who is on the bench. Everitt is rewarding the fine form shown by Williams in the Preparation Series, where he played three games and made a big impact with his pace and eye for a gap.
There is a new face on the bench in the form of tighthead prop Wiehahn Herbst, who has only just joined the Sharks on loan from the Lions. With a tough showdown in the set scrums guaranteed, Everitt has wasted no time in picking the experienced Herbst to back up Thomas du Toit.
Sharks: 15 Aphelele Fassi, 14 Sibusiso Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am (captain), 12 Jeremy Ward, 11 Yaw Penxe, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Grant Williams, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Henco Venter, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Fez Mbatha, 1 Ox Nche.
Replacements: 16 Kerron van Vuuren, 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 Wiehahn Herbst, 19 JJ van der Mescht, 20 Phepsi Buthelezi, 21 Sanele Nohamba, 22 Manie Libbok, 23 Werner Kok.