In a first for local rugby, fans were asked to select the team, and the players with the most votes from supporters across South Africa were named for this historic match against Kenya.
Due to a number of withdrawals, two additions were made to the squad announced last week. Vodacom Bulls prop Mhleli Dlamini and his provincial team-mate Joe van Zyl (hooker) were added to the replacements.
The composite side have been training under the watchful eye of Jake White, the Vodacom Bulls’ director of rugby, and his coaching staff in Pretoria the past few days.
Kenya arrived on Wednesday afternoon and immediately resumed their training schedule after settling into their Pretoria base. Both sides will conclude their preparations with their respective captain’s runs on Friday at Loftus.
A limited number of fans will also be allowed to attend the match after COVID-19 restrictions were recently eased.
Edgar Rathbone, the CEO of the Blue Bulls Company, said they are excited about the prospects of welcoming fans back to Loftus.
“After an extended period of playing matches with no crowds at Loftus Versfeld, we are thrilled to be able to accommodate spectators again to watch this unique match,” said Rathbone.
“We look forward to welcoming our spectators, the Carling Champions Team and Kenya to Loftus.
“Having Government allowing us to accommodate 2 000 people is a step in the right direction, and we are confident that in the near future we will see this number increase and we will soon be able to see a full Loftus Versfeld again.”
According to Rathbone, it is imperative for everyone in attendance – from stadium hosts to spectators and media – to adhere to all guidelines and protocols, as per the recent Government Gazette.
All spectators will need the following to enter the stadium on match-day at Loftus Versfeld:
- Valid ticket
- Vaccination certificate
- Your ID document or driver’s license
It is also important to note and adhere to the following:
- No consumption of alcohol will be allowed at the stadium
- Social distancing needs to be adhered to
- Spectators are to be seated in their allocated seats
- Spectators are to enter the relevant gates for entry and parking
- Spectators are encouraged to arrive between two to three hours ahead of kick-off
The Carling Champions Team is:
15. Sibongile Novuka (Vodacom Bulls)
14. Werner Kok (Cell C Sharks)
13. Chris Smit (Toyota Cheetahs)
12. Howard Mnisi (Toyota Cheetahs)
11. Stravino Jacobs (Vodacom Bulls)
10. Brandon Thomson (Toyota Cheetahs)
9. Keagan Johannes (Vodacom Bulls)
8. Arno Botha (Vodacom Bulls)
7. Phumzile Maqondwana (New Nation Pumas)
6. Nama Xaba (DHL Western Province)
5. Reniel Hugo (Cell C Sharks)
4. PJ Steenkamp (Sigma Lions)
3. Aranos Coetzee (Toyota Cheetahs)
2. Schalk Erasmus (Vodacom Bulls)
1. Simphiwe Matanzima (Vodacom Bulls)
16 Joe van Zyl (Vodacom Bulls)
17 Gerhard Steenekamp (Vodacom Bulls)
18 Mhleli Dlamini (Vodacom Bulls)
19 Reinhardt Ludwig (Vodacom Bulls)
20 Marcel Theunissen (DHL Western Province)
21 Paul de Wet (DHL Western Province)
22 George Whitehead (Tafel Lager Griquas)
23 Stedman Gans (Vodacom Bulls)
24 Ntuthuko Mchunu (Cell C Sharks)
25 Chad Solomon (DHL Western Province)
26 Leolin Zas (DHL Western Province)
27 Ginter Smuts (New Nation Pumas)
28 Tian Meyer (Toyota Cheetahs)
29 Ashlon Davids (Tafel Lager Griquas)
30 Marius Louw (Cell C Sharks)
The Kenya Simbas tour squad:
Forwards: Ian Njenga, Joshua Chisanga, Andrew Siminyu, Eugene Sifuna, Griffin Musila, Boniface Ochieng, Ephraim Oduor, Patrick Ouko, Joseph Odero, Malcolm Onsando (vice-captain), Thomas Okeyo, George Nyambua, Dan Sikuta (captain), Brian Juma, Fidel Oloo, Steve Sakari, Elkeans Musonye.
Backs: Barry Robinson, Brian Wahinya, Jone Kubu, Brian Tanga, Derrick Ashiundu, John Okoth, Vincent Onyala, Samuel Asati, Peter Kilonzo, Darwin Mukidza (vice-captain), Jacob Ojee, Isaac Njoroge, Andrew Matoka.
Date: Saturday, 6 November 2021
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
SA Time: 13h00
Referee: Cwengile Jadezweni