Akker's brother to tackle Cheetahs in Bloem

Thu, 23 Nov 2017 13:21
Large duhan van der merwe 2 800

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENTS: The Cheetahs will see a number of familiar faces when they host Edinburgh in a Pro14 Round Nine match in Bloemfontein on Friday.

There are three South African players in the Scottish outfit's matchday 23.

Top of that list is utility back Jaco van der Walt, who was a key player for the Golden Lions when they knocked the Cheetahs out of the Currie Cup competition in the final round of league action.

Van der Walt, who was recently released by the Lions, will make his Pro14 if he comes off the bench.

Also set to make his Pro14 debut is George-born wing Duhan van der Merwe. He was named in the starting XV.

The brother of former Lions and current Sharks hooker Armand 'Akker' van der Merwe, played age-group rugby for the SWD Eagles - before moving to the Blue Bulls in 2016 (where he played just two matches) before he featured in four matches for Montpellier that year. He joined Edinburgh this year.

Seasoned lock Anton Bresler, with well over 100 first class games - 80-odd for the Sharks and 60 for Edinburgh since he joined them in 2014 - will also start against the Cheetahs.

The Cheetahs have also made a few noteworthy selections.

Clayton Blommetjies will be making his return at fullback.

Daniel Maartens and Craig Barry will be making their Pro14 debuts when they set foot on the field.

Maartens is a youngster who came through the ranks, while Barry is a new recruit who just recently moved from Western Province.

A number of Cheetahs players are not eligible due to injury. They include Elandre Huggett (knee), Neil Jordaan (ankle and knee), Gerhard Olivier (ankle), Ruan van Rensburg (knee), Niel Marais (shoulder), Justin Basson (hand),Ernst Stapelberg (arm),Ryno Eksteen (neck), Dennis Visser (knee).

The two sides have never met before, whilst this is Edinburgh's first fixture against a South African side in the Pro14.

"We'll be facing a strong team with great defence and we are looking forward to the challenge," Cheetahs captain Torsten van Jaarsveld said.

"We've been working hard last week and this week preparing for the match and we are really excited to run onto the field on Friday."

Teams:

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Luther Obi, 13 William Small-Smith, 12 Nico Lee, 11 Makazola Mapimpi, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Junior Pokomela, 7 Rynier Bernardo, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Johan Coetzee, 2 Torsten Van Jaarsveld (captain), 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Jacques du Toit, 17 Retshegofaditswe Nche, 18 Tom Botha, 19 Jasper Wiese, 20 Daniel Maartens, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Tertius Kruger, 23 Craig Barry.

Edinburgh: 15 Blair Kinghorn, 14 Dougie Fife, 13 James Johnstone, 12 Chris Dean, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Jason Tovey, 9 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 8 Viliame Mata, 7 Luke Crosbie, 6 Lewis Carmichael, 5 Fraser McKenzie (captain), 4 Anton Bresler, 3 Murray McCallum, 2 Neil Cochrane, 1 Michele Rizzo.
Replacements: 16 Cameron Fenton, 17 Rory Sutherland, 18 Kevin Bryce, 19 Callum Hunter-Hill, 20 Magnus Bradbury, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Jaco van der Walt, 23 Junior Rasolea.

Date: Friday, November 24
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 19.30 (17.30 GMT; 17.30 UK time)
Referee: Quinton Immelman
Assistant referees: Archie Sehlako, Jaco Kotze
TMO: Johan Greeff

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Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons 15h00 Twickenham Stoop
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PRO14
MORE LOGS
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 15 13 0 2 65
Munster 15 9 0 6 49
Cheetahs 15 8 0 7 41
Cardiff Blues 15 7 0 8 33
Connacht 15 5 0 10 28
Ospreys 15 5 0 10 26
Zebre 15 4 0 11 21
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Leinster 15 12 0 3 57
Scarlets 15 11 0 4 54
Edinburgh 15 10 0 5 46
Ulster 15 9 1 5 46
Treviso 15 8 0 7 38
Dragons 15 2 2 11 17
Kings 15 0 0 15 4