Kolisi leads Bok-laden Sharks against Harlequins
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Springbok Captain Siyamthanda Kolisi returns to lead the Sharks in Saturday’s opening round Champions Cup clash with Harlequins at Kings Park.
Sharks Director of Rugby Neil Powell has revealed a team featuring a number of top Springboks.
Kolisi is joined by fellow Springbok Eben Etzebeth after the international duo missed last week’s United Rugby Championship game following a heavy workload for the national side in their four-match international window in Europe in November.
With Etzebeth back in the starting line-up, Vincent Tshituka will return to the loose forward role he played previously, alongside Kolisi and Phepsi Buthelezi.
Powell has retained much of the same backline as last week, with the only change seeing Werner Kok replacing Marnus Potgieter on the wing.
Meanwhile, Lionel Cronje comes onto the bench to provide flyhalf cover.
Sharks: 15 Henry Chamberlain, 14 Werner Kok, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Ben Tapuai, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Jaden Hendrikse, 8 Phendulani Buthelezi, 7 Vincent Tshituka, 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi (captain), 5 Gerbrandt Grobler, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Retshegofaditswe Nche.
Replacements: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 Khutha Mchunu, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21 Grant Williams, 22 Lionel Cronje, 23 Rohan Janse van Rensburg.
Date: Saturday, December 10
Venue: Kings Park, Durban
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 UK & Ireland time; 13.00 GMT)
Referee: Tual Trainini (France)
Assistant referees: Pierre Brousset (France), Benoit Rousselet (France)
TMO: Thomas Charabas (France)