Plumtree backs his youth

John Plumtree has been forced to dip into his Vodacom Cup reserves for the match against the Stormers this weekend, selecting debutant Sean Robinson on the wing.

Robinson is one of two changes to the Sharks starting line-up, the other being Ryan Kankowski starting on the side of the scrum for the injured Jacques Botes.

Robinson is in his second year at the Sharks Academy who has impressed during his time with the Vodacom Cup team, getting the opportunity to prove he has what it takes at the top level. Plumtree has opted to back a youthful player rather than shifting players around, sticking with Frans Steyn at fullback and Paul Jordaan at outside centre.

Kankowski comes into the side as a straight swop for Botes, with Jean Deysel timing his return from injury to perfection. Deysel injured himself earlier in the competition but is back a week sooner than expected, a spot which would have gone to another youngster, Francois Kleinhans, if he was not ready.

Odwa Ndungane, who started the match last week but went off with a hamstring strain, is on the bench and is expected to be back to full fitness in time for the Cheetahs match next week.

Sharks: 15. Frans Steyn, 14. Sean Robinson, 13. Paul Jordaan, 12. Meyer Bosman, 11. JP Pietersen, 10. Pat Lambie, 9. Cobus Reinach, 8. Keegan Daniel (Capt), 7. Ryan Kankowski, 6. Marcell Coetzee, 5. Franco van der Merwe, 4. Pieter-Steph du Toit, 3. Jannie du Plessis, 2. Kyle Cooper, 1. Tendai Mtawarira. Substitutes: 16. Craig Burden, 17. Wiehahn Herbst, 18. Anton Bresler, 19. Jean Deysel, 20. Charl McLeod, 21. Riaan Viljoen, 22. Odwa Ndungane

By Richard Ferguson