Du Preez happy to have Jean-Luc back for Sharks
Sharks coach Robert du Preez has a lot to smile about‚ especially with Jean-Luc du Preez making a welcome return from a groin injury.
There’s also the added carrot of finding some much-needed consistency‚ starting with Saturday’s clash against the Jaguares at Kings Park.
The Sharks go into this game on the back of a commanding 42-5 win against the Lions at Ellis Park on Friday night.
Du Preez said he was happy with how is team has improved even though the performances haven’t reflected that.
However‚ he cautioned against letting the Lions win go to his team’s head.
“We played well against the Bulls but our discipline let us down. It’s something we’ve worked hard on and I think we’ve fixed that against the Lions‚” Du Preez said.
“I said after that game that it’s only a matter of time before this team really hit its straps and they did on Friday. That game’s gone now and we can’t be living in the past. There’s a lot we need to work on.”
Jean-Luc du Preez’s appearance on the bench is a welcome one for the Sharks as Coenie Oosthuizen and Tendai “Beast” Mtawarira have been rested for the Jaguares game.
Kerron van Vuuren will start at hooker with Juan Schoeman and Thomas du Toit starting at loosehead and tighthead prop respectively. Mzamo Majola and John-Hubert Meyer are the replacement props.
Philip van der Walt gets a start at flank with Jacques Vermeulen getting a rest.
The backline‚ which tore the Lions to shreds with Curwin Bosch coming to the fore‚ remains intact.
Du Preez said the changes were a necessity while they need to retain the intensity that was a hallmark of their all-round performance last week.
“After all the emotions of last week‚ the guys really wanted to play for Beast. It’s going to be a tough act to follow but one of our goals at the beginning of the year was to win all our home games‚” he said.
“We’ve lost two already and that’s a big motivational factor to win this game. We need to get the continuity going.
“We know all the games are tough and tight affairs but the resting periods we have here have been well planned. It’s a massive opportunity for the guys who are coming in and back from injury.”
Sharks –15 Curwin Bosch‚ 14 Lwazi Mvovo‚ 13 Lukhanyo Am‚ 12 André Esterhuizen‚ 11 Makazole Mapimpi‚ 10 Rob du Preez‚ 9 Louis‚ Schreuder (c)‚ 8 Dan du Preez‚ 7 Philip van der Walt‚ 6 Luke Stringer‚ 5 Hyron Andrews‚ 4 Ruben van Heerden‚ 3 Thomas du Toit‚ 2 Kerron van Vuuren‚ 1 Juan Schoeman.
Subs: 16 Fez Mbatha‚ 17 Mzamo Majola‚ 18 John-Hubert Meyer‚ 19 JJ van der Mescht‚ 20 Jean-Luc du Preez‚ 21 Grant Williams‚ 22 Kobus van Wyk‚ 23 Aphelele Fassi.
Jaguares – TBA
Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Federico Anselmi (Argentina)‚ Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)