Key players fit as Sharks prepare for Stormers
SPOTLIGHT: Sharks head coach Sean Everitt is expecting the Stormers to try and bully them in the set-pieces once again in their Rainbow Cup SA opener.
The Sharks will travel to Cape Town Stadium for that clash early on Saturday. That match will then be followed by the Jukskei Derby between the Bulls and the Lions at Loftus Versfeld.
“I think these Saturday double-headers will see all the teams going hammer and tongs,” Everitt told IOL in an interview.
“All of the teams have done some recruiting and look strengthened. The Stormers have consolidated nicely by re-signing key players such as Steven Kitshoff and Frans Malherbe, and I think Marvin Orie [from the Lions] is a very good signing.
“With JD Schickerling, I think they have two very shrewd line-out operators.”
Everitt believes the Stormers will rely heavily on their big pack to try and dominate proceedings.
“It will be very interesting to see what type of game they play against us,” Everitt added. “Last year they were primarily a set-piece side, but they used the ball more in the Preparation Series. They have their heavyweight Bok front-row men back now, so maybe they will go back to a set-piece game.”
Meanwhile, the delayed start to the competition has given some of the Sharks’ stars some extra time to recover from their injuries.
“The extra week off has given [loosehead prop] Ox Nche and [No.8] Sikhumbuzo Notshe the chance to get over ankle problems they picked up against the Bulls [in the final Preparation Series match].” Everitt said.
PRO14 Rainbow Cup SA Fixutres:
Saturday, May 1
Kick-off: 13:00 UK / 14:00 SA (Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town)
Bulls v Lions
Kick-off: 18:00 UK / 19:00 SA (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria)
Saturday, May 8
Sharks v Lions
Kick-off: 15:00 UK / 16:00 SA (Jonsson Kings Park, Durban)
Stormers v Bulls
Kick-off: 17:15 UK / 18:15 SA (Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town)
Saturday, May 15
Lions v Stormers
Kick-off: TBC (Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg)
Bulls v Sharks
Kick-off: 17:15 UK / 18:15 SA (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria)
Round Four to Six (home teams named first, kick-off times TBC)
Weekend 21/22 May
Sharks v Stormers
Lions v Bulls
Weekend 4/5 June
Lions v Sharks
Bulls v Stormers
Weekend 11/12 June
Stormers v Lions
Sharks v Bulls
*Note: All fixtures are subject to change.