Keo.co.za brings you the news from the Currie Cup.
Pottie fit for Bulls
Dewald Potgieter has been declared fit to face Griquas at Loftus on Friday.
The Bok loose forward suffered from whiplash in his neck after the bruising match against Western Province, but will start on the flank. Derick Kuun – who will lead the side – has also been cleared, while Jaco van der Westhuyzen replaces the injured Zane Kirchner at fullback.
Bandise Maku replaces Gary Botha (knee injury), while in the only unforced change, Fudge Mabeta relegates Wilhelm Steenkamp to the bench.
Bulls – 15 Jaco van der Westhuyzen, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Jaco Pretorius, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 John Mametsa, 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9 Ruan Snyman, 8 Gerrit-Jan van Velze, 7 Dewald Potgieter, 6 Derick Kuün (c), 5 Fudge Mabeta, 4 Juandré Kruger, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 Dean Greyling.
Subs: 16 Henry Bantjes, 17 Bees Roux, 18 Jaco Engels, 19 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 20 Dustin Jinka, 21 Stephan Dippenaar.
Lions stay the same
John Mitchell has named an unchanged side for the second week in a row.
After just their second win of the season against the Cheetahs on Saturday, Mitchell has retained the same starting XV and 22 for their match against the Pumas in Witbank on Friday.
Lions – 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Waylon Murray, 12 Doppies la Grange, 11 Michael Killian, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Derick Minnie, 6 Renaldo Bothma, 5 Franco van der Merwe (c), 4 George Earle, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Edgar Marutlulle, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Subs: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Wayne Swart, 18 Johan Snyman, 19 Joshua Strauss, 20 JP Joubert, 21 Burton Francis, 22 Jannie Boshoff.
Botha, Kirchner sidelined
Gary Botha and Zane Kirchner have both suffered knee injuries after the Bulls’ 15-12 defeat to Western Province last Saturday.
There were fears that Botha’s injury would be season long but a medical examination on Monday revealed that the hooker will only be out for a month. Bandise Maku is set to replace Botha in the starting line-up.
Fullback Kirchner, who rejoined the Boks for their Test against the All Blacks on Saturday, has been ruled out by the Boks’ medical team as he damaged cartilage in his knee.
Good news for the Bulls is that loose forwards Derick Kuun and Dewald Potgieter could feature against Griquas on Friday. They will face late fitness tests later in the week.
Sharks sweat on Alberts
The Sharks are hoping Willem Alberts will be fit for their clash against Western Province this Saturday.
Alberts suffered a leg injury in the Sharks’ win over the Leopards last weekend and sat out Monday’s training session. He is expected to return to training on Thursday.
Mapoe still missing
Lionel Mapoe has still not arrived back in Bloemfontein to rejoin the Cheetahs.
The star wing was ordered to return to the Cheetahs after losing a contractual dispute in court last week. Mapoe reportedly refuses to go back to Bloemfontein and wants to stay in Durban with the Sharks.
The Cheetahs told keo.co.za last Friday that they will ‘welcome’ Mapoe back into their squad and he was expected to feature against the Leopards this weekend.
However, head coach Naka Drotske and president Harold Verster are unable to get hold of Mapoe and do not know his whereabouts or when he will return.