Sharks turn to rookie playmaker

Tue, 20 Aug 2013 13:53
Large fred zeilinga.jpg630 Large keegan daniel ice on knee Large sp marais sharks

Rookie flyhalf Fred Zeilinga will make his first Currie Cup start for the Sharks in their clash with the Free State Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Friday.

Rookie flyhalf Fred Zeilinga will make his first Currie Cup start for the Sharks in their clash with the Free State Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Friday.

The 20-year-old pivot replaces veteran Butch James in the starting line-up in one of three changes to the team that beat the Golden Lions in Durban last week.

The injury to fullback Odwa Ndungane sees former Kings outside back SP Marais shift to fullback with Sizo Maseko getting an opportunity to start on the right wing.

In the forward pack loose forward Keegan Daniel makes his expected return to the side after recovering from the knee injury that saw him withdraw from the team that faced the Lions, at the expense of Brynard Stander.

Sharks backline coach Sean Everitt said that the Durban side were relieved to hold off the Lions last week, and added that they will be looking to build on that performance.

"It's been a tense 160 minutes of rugby so we were very happy with the win and getting our campaign on track. We've been together for three weeks and new things were put in place and it takes a while for things to become a habit so that the players can do things on the field sub-consciously," he said.

Everitt said that the Sharks are expecting a backlash from the Cheetahs following their narrow loss to Western Province at Newlands last week.

"The Cheetahs will be disappointed after their loss on the weekend; they know that they are better than that, so it will be a big challenge for us to try contain them. I believe that we have the team to win this competition, we do have a lot of work to do in certain areas of the game and if we can get it right this weekend, we can come away with a win, even though it is in Bloemfontein," he added.

Sharks: 15 SP Marais, 14 Sizo Maseko, 13 Louis Ludik, 12 Heimar Williams, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Jacques Botes (captain), 7 Jean Deysel, 6 Keegan Daniel, 5 Marco Wentzel, 4 Edwin Hewitt, 3 Wiehahn Herbst, 2 Kyle Cooper, 1 Dale Chadwick.
Replacements: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Rayno Gerber, 18 Peet Marais, 19 Tera Mtembu, 20 Cobus Reinach, 21 Butch James, 22 Jaco van Tonder.

Date: Friday, August 23
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 19.10 (17.10 GMT)
Referee: Jason Jaftha
Assistant referees: Jaco van Heerden, Pieter Janse van Vuuren
TMO: Deon van Blommestein

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Team P W D L Pts
Golden Lions 10 10 0 0 48
Blue Bulls 10 8 0 2 39
Western Province 10 7 0 3 35
Free State Cheetahs 10 3 2 5 24
Sharks 10 4 1 5 22
Pumas 10 3 1 6 17
EP Kings 10 2 0 8 12
Griquas 10 1 0 9 8