Griquas name 12 'rookies' for Cheetahs showdown
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Griquas have named 12 players who will make their first appearance for the Kimberley-based outfit when they face the Cheetahs in their Currie Cup season-opener in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
Of those 12 eight players are also making their Currie Cup debut in this central-unions derby.
The team will be captained by seasoned No.8 Ruan Steenkamp, who will rely on No.9 Stefan Ungerer to guide the backline.
Loosehead prop Eddie Davids will make his Currie Cup and Griquas debut.
Lock Derik Pretorius will also be making his first appearance in the Currie Cup and for Griquas.
Flank Niel Otto, who played for the Sharks, Western Province and Pumas previously, will make his first appearance for the Kimberley outfit since signing in the off-season.
Newcomers in the backline – who will make their Currie Cup and Griquas debuts – are flyhalf Zander du Plessis, inside centre Rynhardt Jonker and wing Munier Hartzenberg.
Left wing Luther Obi will make his first appearance for Griquas – having previously played for the Leopards, Eastern Province Kings, Blue Bulls, Cheetahs and Pumas.
On the bench, Johan Retief, Michael Amiras and Kudzwai Dube will make their Currie Cup and Griquas debuts
Justin Forwood (formerly Southern Kings and till last year French Pro D@ club Soyaux Angoulême), as well as Sango Xamlashe (formerly Free State and Bulls), will make their first Griquas appearances if they come off the bench.
Griquas: 15 Ashlon Davids 14 Munier Hartzenberg, 13 Christopher Hollis, 12 Rynhardt Jonker, 11 Luther Obi, 10 Zander du Plessis, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Ruan Steenkamp (captain), 7 Siba Qoma, 6 Niel Otto, 5 Derik Pretorius, 4 Mzwanele Zito, 3 Janu Botha, 2 Alandre van Rooyen, 1 Eddie Davids.
Replacements: 16 Janco Uys, 17 Kudzwai Dube, 18 Justin Forwood, 19 Johan Retief, 20 Michael Amiras, 21 Raegan Oranje, 22 Theo Boshoff, 23 Sango Xamlashe.
Date: Saturday, January 15
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 14.30 (12.30 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant referees: Griffin Colby and Clearance Khumalo
TMO: Ben Crouse