Dale Chadwick is likely to step in for the injured Beast Mtawarira as the Sharks’ starting loosehead prop.
Mtawarira broke his ankle last Friday and will be out of action for the next three months. This presents a problem for the Sharks who have not only lost John Smit to Saracens, a player they believed could play all three front-row positions, but Eugene van Staden as well. Van Staden is currently playing his rugby for Biarritz in France which means that outside of Mtawarira, the Sharks lack an experienced No 1.
Coach John Plumtree will now hope that the young Chadwick brings his Currie Cup form through to the Super Rugby competition. If Chadwick fails to fill the gap, Plumtree may be forced to experiment with one of his tightheads (Jannie du Plessis or Wiehan Herbst) or even the versatile hooker Kyle Cooper at loosehead.
The Sharks will play their first Super Rugby warm-up game against Boland in Durban this Friday. Their second and final pre-season game will be played against the Kings.