The pair are restored to the starting line-up after being rested for last weeks’ disappointing losing encounter with the Jaguares. For this week, Cell C Sharks head coach Robert du Preez has opted to rest Springbok outside backs Lukhanyo Am and Makazole Mapimpi.
That means a start for Kobus van Wyk at outside centre, while Springbok speedster Sbu Nkosi is drafted back into the starting mix. In the pack there is also a return for flanker Jacques Vermeulen, who swops places with Luke Stringer.
The Reds announced three changes to their starting combination. Sefa Naivalu is back after sitting out last weekend and takes his place on the wing. Harry Hoopert is set to earn his first Vodacom Super Rugby start at prop, while Angus Scott-Young moves up from the bench into the No 6 position while Lukhan Salakaia-Loto revert back to lock.
The Durbanites have a good record against the Reds, and Aussie opposition in general. They’ve defeated Aussie teams in all of their last 10 fixtures and boast with eight wins from the last 11 matches against the side from Queensland.
What they said:
Cell C Sharks assistant coach Braam van Straaten said it was important to get over the disappointment of the Jaguares game and focus on the Reds. “We’re going to have to be on top of our game. They’re a good side and they’re a tough side to break down, however, we will be up for the challenge.”
Reds coach Brad Thorn is expecting a big backlash from the home side: “We’ve arrived in Durban in preparation for a tough challenge. After last week’s result, they’ll be hungry and looking to put in a big performance in front of their home fans.”
Cell C Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Kobus van Wyk, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder (captain), 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Kerron van Vuuren, 1 Tendai Mtawarira. Replacements: 16 Fez Mbatha, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Tyler Paul, 20 Jean-Luc du Preez, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Aphelele Fassi.
Reds: 15 Hamish Stewart, 14 Sefa Naivalu , 13 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 12 Samu Kerevi (captain), 11 Jack Hardy, 10 Bryce Hegarty, 9 Tate McDermott, 8 Scott Higginbotham, 7 Liam Wright, 6 Angus Scott-Young, 5 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Alex Mafi, 1 Harry Hoopert. Replacements: 16 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 17 JP Smith, 18 Ruan Smith, 19 Harry Hockings, 20 Adam Korczyk, 21 Moses Sorovi, 22 Duncan Paia’aua, 23 Jock Campbel.
Head to head:
Cell C Sharks won: 10
Reds won: 12
Cell C Sharks points: 537
Reds points: 247
Average score: 24-11
Date: Friday, 19 April
SA time: 15h05
Venue: Jonsson Kings Park, Durban
Referee: Federico Anselmi
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson, Jaco Peyper
Television Match Official: Marius Jonker