Pumas bring out their 'big guns' for Lions hunt
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: The Pumas are planning an ‘unpleasant’ welcome for the Lions in Nelspruit on Friday.
The two teams will meet in a First Round Currie Cup match in the Mbombela Stadium and the hosts have most of their big names back.
Headlined by the return of No.8 Willie Engelbrecht – back from the Stormers, where he was on loan for the Rainbow Cup – the pack has a formidable look.
Engelbrecht was on the fringes of Bok selection with his impressive performances for the Cape Town franchise.
The team will again be captained by hard-working lock Pieter Jansen van Vuren and retains the bulk of the players that demolished the Bulls (44-14) in their last Currie Cup outing – back in January.
In the backline, the most significant changes are at flyhalf and fullback.
The return of star flyhalf Eddie Fouché sees Devon Williams move to fullback.
Pumas: 15 Devon Williams, 14 Tapiwa Mafura, 13 Erich Cronje, 12 Ali Mgijima, 11 Etienne Taljaard, 10 Eddie Fouché, 9 Chriswil September, 8 Willie Engelbrecht, 7 Phumzile Maqondwana, 6 Francois Kleinhans, 5 Pieter Jansen van Vuren (captain), 4 Darrien Landsberg, 3 Marné Coetzee, 2 Simon Westraadt, 1 Corne Fourie.
Replacements: 16 Dewald Maritz, 17 Eduan Swart, 18 Ignatius Prinsloo, 19 Brandon Valentine, 20 Daniel Maartens, 21 Ginter Smuts, 22 Matt Moore, 23 Liam Hendricks.
Date: Friday, June 18
Venue: Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
Kick-off: 19.00 (17.00)
Referee: Cwengile Jadezweni
Assistant referees: Local
TMO: Marius van der Westhuizen