DHL Western Province named to face the Cheetahs at Newlands

Oct 10 • General News, National, South Africa • 2940 Views • Comments Off on DHL Western Province named to face the Cheetahs at Newlands

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Marcel Brache during DHL Western Provinces away leg against Toyota Free State Cheetahs earlier this season. Photo by Jako Pienaar.

DHL Western Province head coach Allister Coetzee has brought back all his Springboks for Saturday’s must-win Absa Currie Cup clash against the Toyota Free State Cheetahs at DHL Newlands (17h05).

Coetzee has made eight changes to his starting line-up from last weekend’s clash in Pretoria with the introduction of DHL WP’s seven Castle Rugby Championship Springboks – including national skipper Jean de Villiers who takes over the captaincy from flanker Deon Fourie.

De Villiers will be joined in the starting line-up by fellow Boks – centre Juan de Jongh, winger Bryan Habana, No.8 Duane Vermeulen, locks Eben Etzebeth and Andries Bekker and hooker Tiaan Liebenberg.

Of the eight changes to the WP starting XV, one is positional with Don Armand shifting from lock to the back row (where he replaces the injured Tyrone Holmes at No.7), meaning there are five changes up front and three changes amongst the backs to the side that went down 13-26 to the Vodacom Blue Bulls.

The only player without Super Rugby experience in the WP line-up is flyhalf Demetri Catrakilis, whilst, remarkably, after 13 Super Rugby matches and eight Tests for the Springboks, lock Eben Etzebeth will make his Absa Currie Cup debut for DHL Western Province.

“You’ve got to select your best possible side for the weekend,” said Coetzee this week.

“It’s completely different from last year, the mindset… everything. This is a crunch game for us (this weekend), last year we had to play the Pumas and we had already qualified for the semifinals. We have selected our best possible team to ensure we qualify for the semifinals.”

Meanwhile, another Springbok, wing/fullback Gio Aplon, rejoins the matchday 22 on the bench after recovering sufficiently from the ankle injury suffered against Griquas three weeks ago.

Aplon will be joined amongst the replacements by regular starters – and performers – up till now; Scarra Ntubeni, Brok Harris, De Kock Steenkamp, Jebb Sinclair, Louis Schreuder and Marcel Brache – giving DHL WP massive strike-power from the bench.

The DHL Western Province team to take on the Toyota Free State Cheetahs is as follows:

15. Joe Pietersen

14. Gerhard van den Heever

13. Juan de Jongh

12. Jean de Villiers (captain)

11. Bryan Habana

10. Demetri Catrakilis

9. Nic Groom

8. Duane Vermeulen

7. Don Armand

6. Deon Fourie

5. Andries Bekker

4. Eben Etzebeth

3. Frans Malherbe

2. Tiaan Liebenberg

1. Steven Kitshoff


16. Scarra Ntubeni

17. Brok Harris

18. De Kock Steenkamp

19. Jebb Sinclair

20. Louis Schreuder

21. Marcel Brache

22. Gio Aplon

Referee: Jonathan Kaplan

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