Sharks forced to wait on Boks
Mon, 21 Oct 2013 15:52
Going to Newlands is a daunting task
The Sharks will continue sweating over the fitness of Springbok prop Jannie du Plessis, as well as the disciplinary hearing of their Bok hooker Bismarck du Plessis.
The men from Durban will travel to Cape Town on Saturday for the 2013 Currie Cup Final, a re-run of the 2012 edition in Durban.
It was revealed on Monday that judgement in the disciplinary hearing of hooker Bismarck du Plessis was reserved until Tuesday.
Du Plessis appeared before a South African Rugby Union judicial committee in Cape Town, after he was cited for allegedly stamping on Free State Cheetahs flank Pieter Labuschagne in their Currie Cup semifinal at Kings Park in Durban at the weekend.
The Bok No.2 received a yellow card in the 65th minute of the match, won 33-22 by the Sharks.
André Oosthuizen, who was appointed the judicial officer, will make his decision known on Tuesday.
If Bismarck du Plessis is indeed banned, it could leave the Sharks with a minor crisis at hooker.
Kyle Cooper picked up a slight knock to his shoulder against the Cheetahs, although the Sharks believe he will be fine for the Final.
Meanwhile the Sharks will only know on Tuesday if Jannie du Plessis will be cleared to take to the field at Newlands, after he damaged his hand in training last week.
The Sharks' medical report on Monday did not confirm if the cast on his left hand was indeed for a fractured bone as some media reports suggested.
Loose forward Jean Deysel, who came off 20 minutes into the semifinal with a hamstring injury, will also undergo an assessment on Tuesday to determine his availability.
He was replaced by Jacques Botes, the most experienced Currie Cup player of all time. Botes could start on the flank if Deysel is ruled out, although moving him to No.8 and Keegan Daniel to the side of the scrum is also an option.
The news is much better for fellow loose forward Willem Alberts and Bok prop Tendai Mtawarira.
Alberts is fit again and available for selection after struggling with a neck injury.
Mtawarira has also been cleared, after he was pulled out of the encounter with the Cheetahs with bruised thigh muscle at the last minute - despite going out for the pre-match warm-ups.
"Going to Newlands to play Western Province in the Final is a daunting task, but we're looking forward to it," Sharks forwards coach Brad Macleod-Henderson said.
"They're a quality outfit, unbeaten in the tournament so far so we'll need to be at the top of our game to get a win there," he added.
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