The Sharks have welcomed back a Springbok to the starting lineup to face the Bulls in the 2021 Currie Cup final in Pretoria on Saturday.
Sharks head coach Sean Everitt has made just three changes to the match-day squad from the team that claimed a narrow win over Griquas in the semi-finals.
Khwezi Mona has been named in place of Ntuthuko Mchunu in the front row, while the return of Thomas du Toit from the Springboks is a timely boost as he replaces Khutha Mchunu at tighthead prop.
The only other change comes on the bench, where replacement scrumhalf Lucky Dlepu is set to make his debut for the Sharks. The 21-year-old featured at age-group level for Western Province, captaining their Craven Week side in 2017, before making the move to Durban last year.
“It’s 1-1 in the Currie Cup, we’ve beaten them once and there’s no reason why we can’t do it again,” said Everitt.
“We know that the ball travels far at Loftus so we’re going to have to handle the aerial battle well, but we have three players – Curwin, Sanele and Lionel – who kick really well and will be up for the challenge.
“We know the Bulls have a massive pack of forwards, they are playing well and were sublime in their semi-final. It’s all about momentum, we know what’s coming our way with regard to how they play and the emphasis for us will be about stopping their momentum and stopping their big ball-carriers.”
The Cell C Sharks Team for this Saturday’s Carling Currie Cup Final!
— The Sharks (@SharksRugby) September 9, 2021
Sharks – 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Werner Kok, 12 Marius Louw, 11 Thaakir Abrahams, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Phepsi Buthelezi (c), 7 Henco Venter, 6 Dylan Richardson, 5 Gerbrandt Grobler, 4 Le Roux Roets, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Kerron van Vuuren, 1 Khwezi Mona.
Replacements: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 Khutha Mchunu, 19 Thembelani Bholi, 20 Reniel Hugo, 21 Lucky Dlepu, 22 Jeremy Ward, 23 Anthony Volmink.
Photo: Steve Haag/Gallo Images