Pienaar returns to his old stomping ground
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Former Ulsterman, Ruan Pienaar returns to Kingspan Stadium when he leads the Cheetahs onto the field.
Coach Hawies Fourie made nine changes to the side from last week. In the front row, Boan Venter, Wilmar Arnoldi and Luan du Bruin switch places with Charles Marais, Joseph Dweba and Aranos Coetzee.
Sintu Manjezi returns from a shoulder injury and will be starting on lock with Walt Steenkamp. JP du Preez will be providing cover on the bench. The wings are Craig Barry and Rhyno Smith with Clayton Blommetjies on fullback.
The two sides will now look ahead to this crunch clash at the Kingspan Stadium on Saturday, both aiming to get their campaigns back on track. A late Luke Price penalty saw second-placed Ulster suffer an agonising 26-24 defeat at Ospreys last weekend and fall further behind leaders Leinster. There was also disappointment for the Toyota Cheetahs who had moved into Conference B’s top three with back-to-back wins over Isuzu Southern Kings only to then lose to Leinster.
The two sides have met on three previous occasions with each team winning once at home and sharing a 39-draw in Bloemfontein in September 2018.
Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Rhyno Smith, 13 William Small-Smith, 12 Benhard Janse van Rensburg, 11 Craig Barry, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Ruan Pienaar (Captain), 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Junior Pokomela, 6 Chris Massyn, 5 Walt Steenkamp, 4 Sintu Manjezi, 3 Luan de Bruin, 2 Wilmar Arnoldi, 1 Boan Venter.
Replacements: 16 Joseph Dweba, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Aranos Coetzee, 19 JP du Preez, 20 Aidon Davis, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Louis Fouche, 23 Chris Smit.
Date: Saturday, February 22
Venue: Kingspan Stadium, Belfast
Kick-off: 19.35 (21.35 SA Time)
Referee: Mike Adamson (Scotland)
Assistant referees: George Clancy (Ireland), Sam Grove-White (Scotland)
TMO: Andrew McMenemy (Scotland)
Get the tissues 😢
Club legend? pic.twitter.com/HAgQk1tJdr
— PRO14 RUGBY (@PRO14Official) February 20, 2020