Griquas shake things up for WP
Griquas coach Pote Human has made four changes to his side for their first Currie Cup home game against Western Province in Kimberley on Saturday.
Human also made a number of positional switches to the side that lost a lacklustre game against the Blue Bulls in Pretoria last weekend.
Griquas have branded all of their home games as must-wins and the coach has opted to go with his strongest side possible.
Young Nick Schonert comes in at prop for Lourens Adriaanse, who was called up to the Springbok squad for their Rugby Championship clash against Argentina this weekend.
In the only other change among the forwards, Leon Karemaker comes in at No.8 in place of Burger Schoeman, who is relegated to the bench.
In a positional switch, Human has also decided to select Hilton Lobberts on the side of the scrum, with Jonathan Adendorf slotting in at lock whilst Jaco Nepgen has recovered from his shoulder injury and starts at lock after passing a fitness test.
"Nick is a young prop with huge potential and we look forward to him proving his worth," Human said on Wednesday.
"The absence of Lourens Adriaanse is a huge setback for us, especially at scrum-time, but we have complete faith in Nick in that regard.
"We are also glad to welcome back Leon Karemaker, who after a long injury stint is ready to add value to the side."
In the backline, Marnus Hugo comes in at scrumhalf, after Jacques Coetzee struggled with the new scrum laws against the Blue Bulls.
Coetzee moves to the bench, while wing Rocco Jansen also gets his first start of this year's competition in one of two positional switches.
He covers for PJ Vermeulen, who moves to fullback in place of Gouws Prinsloo, whilst centre JP Nel and wing Nico Scheepers have recovered from the flu to take their places in the starting line-up.
"Rocco is an experienced wing and one of the senior players in the side," Human added.
"We are happy with his fitness since recovering from a knee injury and know his presence will benefit the side. PJ is a versatile player that will cover the fullback position."
The coach has resisted the urge to include Griquas' newest addition, lock Rory Arnold, after the Australian joined the Kimberley side for the duration of the Currie Cup, but is still unfamiliar with some of the Griquas' structures, according to Human.
"Rory is a player with great talent, but he still needs to settle into the system and structures. We are approaching every game in the Currie Cup as if it is a final.
"Therefore it is difficult to take chances. The game against Province is one we can't afford to lose."
Griquas: 15 PJ Vermeulen, 14 Nico Scheepers, 13 JP Nel, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Marnus Hugo, 8 Leon Karemaker, 7 Hilton Lobberts, 6 Carel Greeff, 5 Jaco Nepgen, 4 Jonathan Adendorf, 3 Nick Schonert, 2 Ryno Barnes (captain), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Matt Dobson, 17 Brummer Badenhorst, 18 RJ Liebenberg, 19 Burger Schoeman, 20 Jacques Coetzee, 21 Du Randt Gerber, 22 Richard Lawson.
Date: Saturday, August 24
Venue: GWK Park, Kimberley
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 GMT)
Referee: Sindile Mayende
Assistant referees: Ben Crouse, Francois de Bruin
TMO: Gerrie Coetzee