Griquas feeling Bullish
Veteran hooker Ryno Barnes will lead Griquas into battle against the Blue Bulls in a Currie Cup first-round match in Pretoria on Friday.
The men from Kimberley will arrive at Loftus Versfeld with a settled combination that features two former Bulls – centres JP Nel and Stefan Watermeyer.
At fullback will be one of the finds of the season, Cheetahs utility back Willie le Roux – who will make his debut for Griquas, after signing on with the Kimberley outfit from the Boland Cavaliers this year.
Barnes said Griquas are determined to make 2012 a successful season, given that there is talk of including the EP Kings in the Currie Cup from next year.
"The team has been training very hard for more than nine weeks now," Barnes said.
"We believe it [more than two months of preparation time] will work in our favour in the Currie Cup," he said of a team that will face the five Super Rugby franchises in the revamped domestic competition.
"It is vital that Griquas have a good season, to reach the semifinal or even better, given the ongoing uncertainty about the Kings' inclusion [next year]," he added.
He added the arrival of new faces like the two former Bulls – Nel and Watermeyer – as well as Luzuko Vulindlu from the Sharks will be a huge boost to the team.
Griquas: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Luzuko Vulindlu, 13 JP Nel, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Jacques Coetzee, 8 Leon Karemaker, 7 Jonathan Adendorff, 6 Justin Downey, 5 Martin Muller, 4 Rynhard Landman, 3 Lourens, Adriaanse, 2 Ryno Barnes (captain), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Dobson, 17 Janro van Niekerk, 18 Frikkie Spies, 19 Jaco Nepgen, 20 Marnus Hugo, 21 Marnitz Boshoff, 22 Wilmaure Louw.
Date: Friday, August 10
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 19.10 (17.10 GMT)
Referee: Rasta Rashivenga
Assistant referees: Craig Joubert, Attie Buitendag
TMO: Shaun Veldsman