Elephants hustle up more muscle

Southern Kings’ Fijian flyer Meli Rokoua
Southern Kings’ Fijian flyer Meli Rokoua

Several Isuzu Southern Kings players, including Fijian flyer Meli Rokoua, have been named in a 37-man EP Elephants squad for the SuperSport Rugby Challenge competition.

There are 15 Kings players in the group, while 22 have been drawn from club teams for the tournament, which starts on April 28 against Boland in Wellington.

In 2018, the Elephants enjoyed miserable SuperSport Challenge and Currie Cup seasons and hopes are high they will fare better this season under new coach Chumani Booi.

EP round off their preparations for the new season with a friendly match against South Western Districts in Plettenberg Bay on Wednesday.

“This group is part of the planning to ensure a smooth transition and continuity with the view to giving current PRO14 players game time before the start of the Currie Cup,” EP president Andre Rademan said.

The squad:

Props: Xander Vos, Justin Forward, Luvuyo Pupuma (all Southern Kings), Dewald Barnard, Nicholas Roebeck (both PE Police), Johan van Wyk (Madibaz).

Hookers: Tango Balekile (Kings), Tembekile Boltina (Madibaz), Mbeko Kota (Spring Rose).

Locks: Schalk Oelofse, Jurie van Vuuren, Lubalalo Mtayanda (all Kings), Ashley Viviers (Parks), Anele Lungisa (Star of Hope).

Loose forwards: Shaun Basson (Progress), Kamva Dilima (Madibaz), Pieter Steph de Wet (Kings), Renier Erasmus (PE Police), Diego Williams (Gardens), Zingisa April (Spring Rose). Backs:

Scrumhalves: Richmond Gora (Missionavale), Sonwabile Majola (Progress), Ethan Majola (Harlequins).

Flyhalfs: Oliver Zono and Martin du Toit (both Kings), Luvo Claassen (Madibaz).

Centres: Sherwin Slater (Harlequins), Ntabeni Dukisa, Sibisiso Sithole (both Kings), Sonwabile Mantyoyi (Kwaru), Fabio Mapeleng (Madibaz).

Wings: Mike Makasi, Meli Rokoua (both Kings), Bathandwa Manentsa (Parks) Athi Mahinje (Madibaz).

Fullbacks: Michael Botha (Kings), Tristan Fourie (Madibaz).