Cheetahs get their captain back

Fri, 09 Feb 2018 12:33
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TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: The Cheetahs have been boosted by the return of Springbok centre Francois Venter for their Pro14 clash against the Cardiff Blues on Saturday.

Venter makes his return from injury and will also lead the side at Cardiff Arms Park.

Meanwhile, Malcolm Jaer will be making his Pro14 debut when he sets foot to field, while Paul Schoeman will be playing in his 50th match for the Cheetahs. 

The Cheetahs are third on the log in Conference A, trailing Munster by only three points. 

The Cheetahs have played in 13 matches so far of which they have won eight with a winning rate of 88 percent at home. The Cheetahs have a total of 51 tries and an overall winning rate of 62 percent. 

With eight (five away and three home) matches still to play before the play-offs, the Cheetahs are competing for a home play-off. Their only defeat in their last five Pro14 matches was 21-27 in Treviso on January 6. 

Although this will be the first Pro14 encounter for the two teams, they have previously met in a friendly match for the Sir George Grey Cub in 2012 in Bloemfontein.

Cardiff Blues have been boosted by the return of four Wales squad members for the clash.

Following four weeks of Challenge Cup and Anglo-Welsh Cup fixtures, the Blues will continue their hunt for European qualification. 

Two of those released back from Wales' Six Nations camp are included in the starting line-up, as 12 changes are made from last week's Anglo-Welsh Cup defeat to London Irish.

Seb Davies, who crossed the whitewash against the Exiles, is one of three players to retain their starting spot. The 21-year-old switches from No.8 to lock, partnering George Earle in the boiler room.

Ellis Jenkins returns to the openside, and combines with Macauley Cook and Nick Williams in the back row.

Gethin Jenkins will captain the side, and he is named in an experienced front row, alongside Matthew Rees and Anton Peikrishvili.

Owen Lane returns to the wing while Rey Lee-Lo and Garyn Smith are reunited in midfield, and Lloyd Williams links up with Jarrod Evans at halfback.

Teams:

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Craig Barry, 13 Francois Venter (captain), 12 Nico Lee, 11 Sibhale Maxwano, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Uzair Cassiem, 7 Teboho Mohoje, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Rynier Bernardo, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Johan Coetzee, 2 Torsten Van Jaarsveld, 1 Retshegofaditswe Nche.
Replacements: 16 Jacques Du Toit, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Tom Botha, 19 Carl Wegner, 20 Henco Venter, 21 Zee Mkhabela, 22 Niel Marais, 23 Malcolm Jaer.

Cardiff Blues: 15 Rhun Williams, 14 Aled Summerhill, 13 Garyn Smith, 12 Rey Lee-Lo, 11 Owen Lane, 10 Jarrod Evans, 9 Lloyd Williams, 8 Nick Williams, 7 Ellis Jenkins, 6 Macauley Cook, 5 Seb Davies, 4 George Earle, 3 Anton Peikrishvili, 2 Matthew Rees, 1 Gethin Jenkins (captain).
Replacements: 16 Kirby Myhill, 17 Brad Thyer, 18 Dillon Lewis, 19 Josh Turnbull, 20 Olly Robinson, 21 Tomos Williams, 22 Dan Fish, 23 Ryan Edwards.

Referee: Ian Davies (Wales)
Assistant referees: Rhys Thomas (Wales), Rob Price (Wales)
TMO: Jon Mason (Wales)

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 24 February 2018
Treviso v Connacht 12h00 Stadio Monigo
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Bath v Sale Sharks 14h30 Recreation Ground
Gloucester v Wasps 14h30 Kingsholm
Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons 14h30 Twickenham Stoop
Bulls v Hurricanes 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Scotland v England 16h45 BT Murrayfield
Ospreys v Cheetahs 17h30 Liberty Stadium
Scarlets v Ulster 19h35 Parc y Scarlets
Sun, 25 February 2018
Zebre v Cardiff Blues 13h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
London Irish v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Madejski Stadium
Saracens v Leicester Tigers 15h30 Allianz Park
Fri, 02 March 2018
Blues v Chiefs 06h35 Eden Park
Reds v Brumbies 09h00 Suncorp Stadium
Kings v Dragons 17h35 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 19h35 Kingspan Stadium
Edinburgh v Munster 19h35 Myreside
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 19h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Harlequins v Bath 19h45 Twickenham Stoop
Sat, 03 March 2018
Sunwolves v Rebels 22h00 Tokyo
Crusaders v Stormers 06h35 Christchurch
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 24 February 2018
Waratahs v Stormers 34 | 27
Crusaders v Chiefs 45 | 23
Sunwolves v Brumbies 25 | 32
Fri, 23 February 2018
France v Italy 34 | 17
Leinster v Kings 64 | 7
Dragons v Edinburgh 12 | 25
Munster v Glasgow Warriors 21 | 10
Rebels v Reds 45 | 19
Highlanders v Blues 41 | 34
Mon, 19 February 2018
NWU-Pukke v UJ 18 | 15
UCT-Ikeys v Shimlas 27 | 32
Maties v CUT-Ixias 75 | 12
NMMU-Madibaz v Wits 29 | 32
Sun, 18 February 2018
Dragons v Treviso 15 | 18
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 13 | 7
PRO14
MORE LOGS
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 16 13 1 2 65
Munster 16 10 0 6 53
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 16 13 0 3 61
Scarlets 15 11 0 4 54
Edinburgh 16 11 0 5 51
Ulster 15 9 1 5 46
Treviso 15 8 0 7 38
Dragons 15 2 2 11 17
Kings 16 0 0 16 4