SA Schools coach Lance Sendin and SA Schools A coach Sean Erasmus opted for continuity in selection for their final Under-19 International Series matches at Paarl Boys’ High on Saturday against England and Wales respectively as they look to finish the tournament on a winning note.
Sendin made only two changes to his team, with Paarl Boys prop Reece Bezuidenhout and HTS Middelburg flanker JC Pretorius earning starts in place of Nathan McBeth and Charl Serdyn respectively.
Erasmus, meanwhile, made an injury-enforced change to the SA Schools A team for their clash against Wales, with winger Ayabonga Oliphant coming in for fullback Abner van Reenen, who is nursing a quadriceps strain.
This resulted in two positional switches to the team, with Austin Davids moving from wing to fullback, and Tadendaishe Mujawo starting on the right wing to make place for Oliphant on the left wing.
Sendin said it was tough to select his team for their closing match against England as all the players in the squad had immense potential.
“It was really difficult to select this squad, but we opted for the player combinations we thought would be the best to execute the game plan we would like to play against England,” said Sendin. “With only two changes, we will have the luxury of continuity in selection, which will be good against the physical and determined English team. They have suffered defeats in both their matches up to now, so we are expecting them to give their all to finish the tournament on a winning note. But we are equally determined to complete the tournament unbeaten, so it will be a good test for both teams.”
Erasmus, who is also the Paarl Boys’ High 1st XV coach, meanwhile, said the continuity in selection in the SA Schools A team was driven by the desire to reward the players who guided them to a 53-14 victory against England on Tuesday.
“We felt that it was important to reward the players for the good form they showed against England, and hopefully we will be able to build on that this week,” said Erasmus. “Our focus at training has been on getting our game plan to function smoothly and improving our accuracy. Wales are a good side and they very are clinical in their approach, so we will have to be at our best to beat them.”
France and Italy will kick off the day’s action at Paarl Boys’ High on Saturday when they meet at 11h15.
All three matches will be broadcast on channel 198, SuperSport’s pop-up channel.
SA Schools team to face England:
|15||Gianni Lombard||Paarl Boys|
|14||Mike Mavovana||Rondebosch Boys|
|13||Manuel Rass||Paarl Boys|
|12||Rikus Pretorius||Grey College, Bloem|
|11||Muller du Plessis||Paarl Gym|
|10||Damian Willemse||Paul Roos|
|9||Richman Gora||Welkom Gymnasium|
|8||Khwezi Mafu||Grey High, PE|
|7||Muller Uys||Paarl Gym|
|6||JC Pretorius||HTS Middelburg|
|5||Ben-Jason Dixon||Paul Roos|
|4||Salmaan Moerat (captain)||Paarl Boys|
|3||Sazi Sandi||St Andrews College|
|2||Daniel Jooste||Paarl Boys|
|1||Reece Bezuidenhout||Paarl Boys|
|18||Johan Neethling||Paarl Boys|
|20||Charl Serdyn||Paarl Boys|
|21||Rewan Kruger||Grey College, Bloem|
|22||Ruan de Swardt||Affies|
|24||Khanya Ncusane||Paarl Boys|
|26||Sihle Njezula||Grey High, PE|
SA Schools A team to face Wales:
|14||Tadendaishe Mujawo||St Benedict’s|
|13||Janco van Heyningen||Grey College, Bloem|
|12||Louritz Van der Schyff (captain)||Affies|
|11||Ayabonga Oliphant||Grey High, PE|
|8||Dian Schoonees||Grey College, Bloem|
|7||Francke Horn||Paarl Boys High|
|6||Athi Magwala||Boland Landbou|
|5||Juan van der Mescht||Glenwood|
|16||Dylan Richardson||Kearsney College|
|23||Lubabalo Dobela||Grey High, PE|
|24||Sicelo Tole||Muir College|
|26||Abner van Reenen||Garsfontein|