Sharks go French for Mvovo's ton

Wed, 22 Feb 2017 08:32
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TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Experienced French fullback Clement Poitrenaud could make his Super Rugby debut from the bench for the Sharks' opener against the Reds in Brisbane, however, the focus will be on Lwazi Mvovo's milestone achievement.

The Springbok wing will join a select group of Super Rugby centurions and head coach Robert du Preez expressed his joy at this accomplishment.

"I'm very pleased for Lwazi on gaining his 100th Super Rugby cap - that's a massive achievement. He's a guy who always sets high standards for himself and it's great to have a guy with that sort of experience in our set-up, who always sets a good example for the young guys in the team. Hopefully, we'll give him a good present on Friday," du Preez said.

Poitrenaud brings a wealth of experience to the replacements bench that features Springboks Mahlatse Ralepelle and Lourens Adriaanse. The French fullback has amassed 47 international caps and provides cover for the exciting Curwin Bosch.

Du Preez had no hesitation in handing a Sharks debut to Kobus van Wyk, who joined the Durban-based franchise from the Stormers in October 2016, while another former Stormers player Jacques Vermeulen, could have his first run out after being named on the bench.

Patrick Lambie will lead a team with a strong mix of youth and experience. Young players who have performed in pre-season have been given the opportunity to impress further.

"We rewarded the guys that have really done well so far - there were no surprises. I think this is an exciting side and I'm really looking forward to seeing how we go on Friday. It's going to be a tough challenge," he added.

Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie (captain), 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Lubabalo Mtembu, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 17 Thomas du Toit, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Stephan Lewies, 20 Jacques Vermeulen, 21 Michael Claassens, 22 Jeremy Ward, 23 Clement Poitrenaud.

Date: Friday, February 24
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Kick-off: 19.00 (09.00 GMT; 11.00 CAT)
Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Paul Williams (New Zealand), Nic Berry (Australia)
TMO: Damien Mitchelmore (Australia)

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 17
Reds 8 2 0 6 10
Force 7 2 0 5 9
Waratahs 8 2 0 6 9
Rebels 7 1 1 5 7
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 8 0 0 36
Hurricanes 8 7 0 1 33
Chiefs 8 7 0 1 33
Highlanders 8 5 0 3 23
Blues 8 3 0 5 17
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 8 6 0 2 26
Bulls 8 3 0 5 14
Cheetahs 8 2 0 6 10
Sunwolves 8 1 0 7 5
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 8 7 0 1 32
Sharks 8 5 1 2 24
Jaguares 8 4 0 4 20
Kings 8 2 0 6 10