Smith in Cheetahs' mix

Mon, 28 Jan 2013 07:52
Large juan smith   heinrich bruss Large juan smith injured 630 Large schalk burger   juan smith Large juansmith3ntry

Veteran Springbok flank Juan Smith could be the bolter in the Cheetahs team when they face the Stormers in a pre-season match on Saturday.

Veteran Springbok flank Juan Smith could be the bolter in the Cheetahs team when they face the Stormers in a pre-season match in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

Cheetahs assistant coach Hawies Fourie, who expressed his disappointment in the side's 17-33 loss to the Lions in Johannesburg at the weekend, revealed that a number of key players are scheduled to return this week.

Smith, who has not played since 25 February 2011, when he tore his Achilles tendon in a Super Rugby match against the Bulls in Bloemfontein , started training with the Cheetahs last week.

Whether it is uncertain that he will start against the Stormers, given the need for him to be "eased back" after two years on the sidelines and several operations, he could make his comeback off the bench.

Another Bok veteran who is an outside chance to feature against the Stormers is fellow flank Heinrich Brüssow - who has not played since he injured his shoulder in the Cheetahs' Currie Cup encounter with Griquas in October.

"There are so many of our first-choice players that have to return from injury," Fourie said, adding: "You are looking at guys like Adriaan Strauss, Coenie Oosthuizen, Juan Smith, Heinrich Brüssow, Philip van der Walt and Lappies Labuschagne which are almost a whole pack of forwards.

"There is still some fire power at home and if everyone is ready we will have a really good team.”

Fourie heaped praise on the Golden Lions for the way they have reacted to relegation from this year's Super Rugby tournament, following their demolition of the Cheetahs at the weekend.

The Lions made a spirited comeback in the second half of the warm-up match from a 10-point deficit to triumph in the end.

"You have to give credit to the Lions for the way they played, especially in the second half, how they came back and used their opportunities,” Fourie said.

Fourie lamented his side's performance and believed some of the players did not impress in their first outing of the season.

While the Cheetahs showed some potential on attack, their defence ultimately let them down as they leaked five tries.

"The combinations are not tried yet and from a coaching point of view, we wanted to see how the guys performed in the positions they were selected,” he said.

"There are a few guys that would be disappointed today and the effort wasn't good enough.”

Fourie said it remained a challenge at the start of the season to find the right combinations from their options.

"It is always difficult for the Cheetahs at the beginning of the Super Rugby season to decide between players from the Griquas and us, who are the best and second best,” Fourie said.

"These games are there to look at this and there were guys that looked good in training but did not put up their hands after we expected them to do better.”

SAPA

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Mon, 20 February 2017
CUT-Ixias v Shimlas 14h45 Bloemfontein
TUT v WSU 16h30 Pretoria
UWC v Rhodes 16h30 Cape Town
UKZN-Impi v Fort Hare 16h30 Durban
Maties v NMMU-Madibaz 16h30 Stellenbosch
NWU-Pukke v UCT-Ikeys 16h30 Potchefstroom
UJ v UP-Tuks 17h00 Johannesburg
Thu, 23 February 2017
Rebels v Blues 08h45 Melbourne
Fri, 24 February 2017
Highlanders v Chiefs 06h35 Dunedin
Reds v Sharks 09h00 Brisbane
Harlequins v Leicester Tigers 17h45 Twickenham Stoop
Edinburgh v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Myreside
Dragons v Leinster 19h30 Rodney Parade
Munster v Scarlets 19h35 Thomond Park
Sat, 25 February 2017
Sunwolves v Hurricanes 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Brumbies 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Force 08h45 Allianz Park
Saracens v Sale Sharks 12h45 Allianz Park
Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Franklin's Gardens
Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons 13h00 Sandy Park
Cheetahs v Lions 13h05 Bloemfontein
Scotland v Wales 14h25 BT Murrayfield
Kings v Jaguares 15h15 Port Elizabeth
Ireland v France 16h50 Aviva Stadium
Stormers v Bulls 17h30 Cape Town
Sun, 26 February 2017
Bristol v Bath 11h00 Ashton Gate
Zebre v Ulster 12h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Treviso v Connacht 12h30 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Wasps v Gloucester 12h30 Ricoh Arena
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h05 Liberty Stadium
England v Italy 15h00 Twickenham Stadium
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 10 0 5 43
Waratahs 15 8 0 7 40
Rebels 15 7 0 8 31
Reds 15 3 1 11 17
Force 15 2 0 13 13
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 15 11 0 4 53
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 52
Chiefs 15 11 0 4 51
Crusaders 15 11 0 4 50
Blues 15 8 1 6 39
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 1 4 51
Bulls 15 9 1 5 42
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Sunwolves 15 1 1 13 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 14 11 0 3 52
Sharks 15 9 1 5 43
Jaguares 14 3 0 11 18
Kings 15 2 0 13 9