Fullback Craig Barry will captain DHL Western Province in their opening SuperSport Rugby Challenge encounter against SWD in East London on Sunday.
The opening Rugby Festival of the 2019 SuperSport Rugby Challenge, originally scheduled for the Sisa Dukashe Stadium in Mdantsane on Sunday 28 April, will now move to the Buffalo City Stadium in East London.
The recent heavy rains in the area have rendered the Sisa Dukashe Stadium unsafe to host Sunday’s double-header and in the interest of player safety, a decision was taken to move the festival to the Buffalo City Stadium.
The fixtures remain unchanged with the SWD Eagles taking on DHL Western Province at 12h30, followed by the Border Bulldogs and Zimbabwe Academy at 14h30. Entry into the stadium is free.
Barry is joined in the back three by wings Nico Leonard and Edwill van der Merwe, with EW Viljoen in the midfield alongside Lyle Hendricks.
Scrumhalf Paul de Wet will link up with flyhalf Abner van Reenen, with the likes of Deon Carstens, Tristan Leyds and Sihle Njezula set to make an impact from the replacements bench.
The experienced Sikhumbuzo Notshe will be at the back of the scrum, forming an exciting loose trio combination with flanks Johan du Toit and Marno Redelinghuys.
David Meihuizen and Ben-Jason Dixon will start in the second row, while up front hooker Daniel Jooste will have props Lee-Marvin Mazibuko and Kwenzo Blose on either side of him.
Among the forward replacements are two local club players in Tygerberg hooker Chadley and UWC prop Liam Hendricks.
DHL Western Province Head Coach Jerome Paarwater said that his team are aiming to be as accurate as possible in their opening game of the campaign.
“We had a good camp in Hermanus this week, so we are focused on seeing that pay off on the pitch.
“We have a number of talented players, so our challenge will be to come together and play as a unit from the start,” he said.
DHL Western Province:
15 Craig Barry (captain), 14 Nico Leonard, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Lyle Hendricks, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Abner van Reenen, 9 Paul de Wet, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Johan du Toit, 6 Marno Redelinghuys, 5 David Meihuizen, 4 Ben-Jason Dixon, 3 Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, 2 Daniel Jooste, 1 Kwenzo Blose.
16 Chadley Wenn, 17 Liam Hendricks, 18 Jordan Sesink-Clee, 19 Chris Massyn, 20 Deon Carstens, 21 Tristan Leyds, 22 Sihle Njezula.