Johnson must make an impact off the bench ... again
Sevens star Johannes Prinsloo has raced past established Springbok Ashley Johnson to get his first start for the Cheetahs.
The Cheetahs team, to face the Sharks in their final Super Rugby outing of the season in Durban on Saturday, is one of several changes to the matchday 22.
The inclusion of Prinsloo, a stalwart in the Bok Sevens team on the IRB circuit, has come as the result of an injury that ruled Justin Downey.
The dislocated finger, which will sideline the player for about six weeks, will see Downey join a host of other Cheetah stars on the sidelines - Davon Raubenheimer (knee), Philip van der Walt (foot) and Juan Smith (Achilles).
The elevation of Prinsloo, affectionately known as Boom, will raise some eyebrows. However, it is not surprising to see Johnson again playing off the bench - given that the London Wasps-bound player has made more of an impact off the bench and has failed to reproduce his best form in his handful of starts this season.
Prinsloo will combined with Pieter Labuschagne and Heinrich Brüssow in the new-look Cheetahs loose forward combination.
The only other change to the starting XV will see Philip Snyman start on the left wing in place of the injured Cameron Jacobs.
There is another injury enforced change to the bench, where Griquas No.9 Jacques Coetzee will hope to get his Cheetahs debut, standing in for the injured veteran Tewis de Bruyn.
Andries Strauss returns from injury to take the spot vacated on the bench by Snyman's promotion to the starting XV.
Cheetahs: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Nico Scheepers, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Barry Geel, 11 Philip Snyman, 10 Riaan Smit, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Boom Prinsloo, 7 Pieter Labuschagne, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Izak van der Westhuizen, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Trevor Nyakane.
Replacements: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Marcel van der Merwe, 18 Waltie Vermeulen, 19 Ashley Johnson, 20 Jacques Coetzee, 21 Sias Ebersohn, 22 Andries Strauss.
Date: Saturday, July 14
Venue: Kings Park, Durban
Kick-off: 17.05 (15.05 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant referees: Marius Jonker, Reuben Rossouw
TMO: Gerrie Coetzee