Cheetahs keep their winning formula
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Cheetahs coach Hawies Fourie made just one change to his team for the Currie Cup semifinal.
The Cheetahs will host a determined Pumas team in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
Gideon van der Merwe returns at flank, after being rested last week, with Andisa Ntsila dropping down to the replacement bench.
George Cronje and Mihlali Mosi, who were on the bench last week, dropped out of the matchday 23.
Players unavailable for selection due to injury include Branden de Kock (knee), Malcolm Jaer (ankle), Craig Barry (knee), Evardi Boshoff (groin), Duncan Saal (hamstring), Wilmar Arnoldi (hamstring) and Frans Steyn (hamstring).
The Pumas last played in a semifinal of South Africa’s premier domestic competition 42 years ago, when they still played under the South-Eastern Transvaal banner.
The Cheetahs won the last of their six Curie Cup titles in 2019. They were also runners-up nine times.
Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Daniel Kasende, 13 David Brits, 12 Chris Smit, 11 Rosko Specman, 10 Siyabonga Masuku, 9 Ruan Pienaar (captain), 8 Jeandre Rudolph, 7 Aidon Davis, 6 Gideon van der Merwe, 5 Victor Sekekete, 4 Rynier Bernardo, 3 Aranos Coetzee, 2 Louis van der Westhuizen, 1 Cameron Dawson.
Replacements: 16 Marnus van der Merwe, 17 Alulutho Tshakweni, 18 Marne Coetzee, 19 Ockie Barnard, 20 Andisa Ntsila, 21 Rewan Kruger, 22 Reinhardt Fortuin, 23 Robert Ebersohn.
Date: Saturday, June 18
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 13.30 (11.30 GMT)
Referee: Morné Ferreira
Assistant referees: Paul Mente, Ruhan Meiring
TMO: Marius Jonker