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JC starts for Sharks

Wed, 08 May 2013 09:29
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Lions import JC Janse van Rensburg will start his first match for the Sharks when they face the Reds in Brisbane on Friday.

Lions import JC Janse van Rensburg will start his first Super Rugby match for the Sharks when they face the Reds in Brisbane on Friday.

Sharks coach John Plumtree made four changes to the starting XV that lost 22-25 to the Highlanders last week - two forced through injury.

The experienced Janse van Rensburg, who has played in 118 matches for the Lions since 2006 and was a Springbok squad member on the year-end tour, will start at loosehead prop.

Wiehahn Herbst will start in his favoured position at tighthead. He has been retained after two outstanding performances, allowing Jannie du Plessis a break - the veteran Bok having started almost every game and carrying a heavy workload.

With Lubabalo Mtembu nursing some bruising, picked up against the Highlanders and unavailable for the match, captain Keegan Daniel shifts back to No.8, opening a spot for Jean Deysel to complete an all-Springbok loose forward combination.

In the backline the loss of Frans Steyn last week means JP Pietersen will start at outside centre, handing Piet Lindeque his second start in three matches.

Monde Hadebe gets the opportunity to make his debut at Super Rugby level, having been named on the bench for Craig Burden, who has returned home with 'cervical disc disfunction'.

After two outings for the Sharks XV in the Vodacom Cup Springbok Willem Alberts has returned to the side and has been named on a bench that features three Boks.

Despite two defeats - to the Chiefs and Highlanders - on tour, the Sharks' focus remains on the challenge ahead.

"We're just going from week to week," Plumtree said.

"We want to take the pressure off, play for each other and play for jersey; that's important.

"We're in a different set of circumstance with the team because of the fact that we have so many guys out, we just have to put our heads together.

"We've sent four to five guys home already and it's only halfway through the tour.

"We've had to change personnel, we've had to play players out of position, it's not great. But right now the focus is solely on getting a team prepared for the weekend."

Sharks: 15 Riaan Viljoen, 14 Piet Lindeque, 13 JP Pietersen, 12 Meyer Bosman, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Keegan Daniel (captain), 7 Jean Deysel, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 3 Wiehahn Herbst, 2 Kyle Cooper, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Monde Hadebe, 17 Jannie du Plessis, 18 Anton Bresler, 19 Derick Minnie, 20 Willem Alberts, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Odwa Ndungane.

Date: Friday, May 10
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Kick-off: 19.40 (09.0 GMT; 11.40 SA time)
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Rohan Hoffmann (Australia), Graham Cooper (Australia)
TMO: Steve Leszczynski (Australia)

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