The Cheetahs and Kings have both fielded players who will win their 50th caps as they begin their Pro14 tours on Ireland and Wales this weekend.
Cheetahs prop Aranos Coetzee and Southern Kings loose forward Ruan Lerm will both rack up their 50th appearances this weekend as both teams leave South African shores in search of crucial log points.
Coetzee will accompany his Cheetahs team to face defending champions Leinster, who are an unbelievable unbeaten run this season while Lerm’s Kings’ side head to take on Munster on Friday night as they try and shake off the setback of two derby losses to the Cheetahs a fortnight ago.
Cheetahs coach Hawies Fourie believes that Coetzee is a key member of his side at the moment and the calmness he gives the side in the setpiece has seen it become one of their attacking weapons, and certainly one they will need to use on Saturday in Dublin if they are to defy the odds and end Leinster’s run.
Fourie said the duo of Coetzee and Luan de Bruin, who played his 50th game two weeks ago, gives the Cheetahs a significant advantage in the setpieces.
‘He is one of the best scrummagers in the competition and that helps us a lot. A lot of teams scrum for penalties in the competition and that puts you under pressure if your tighthead is not up to standard. The big thing there for me is Luan (de Bruin) is very close to Aranos. I think in the scrum Aranos is better but in general play Luan is an exceptional tighthead, so they complement each other.’
Meanwhile, the Kings are looking to bounce back from their loss to the Cheetahs and believe they will be able to surprise Munster on their home ground, especially as a number of Irish Internationals are not available.
Lerm will be looking to contribute for his team in helping them achieve this aim, and was “humbled and excited” by the news of his 50th cap.
‘It is something special for me and something that I’ve looked forward to. When you start playing you look up to the greats and see them getting their 50th and 100th caps, so it is something that is humbling and something I’m looking forward to,’ he said.
The Kings face Munster at 9.30pm on Friday night (SS1) while the Cheetahs take on Leinster at 4.25pm on Saturday (SS2).
Cheetahs (vs Leinster) – TBC
Kings (vs Munster) – 15 Andell Loubser, 14 Chris H0llis, 13 Sbura Sithole, 12 Erich Cronje, 11 Eddie Ludick, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Ruaan Lerm, 7 Bobby de Wee, 6 Lusanda Badiyana, 5 JC Astle (c), 4 Jerry Sexton, 3 Rossouw de Klerk, 2 Jacques du Toit, 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Subs: 16 Alandre van Rooyen, 17 Xandre Vos, 18 Ignatius Prinsloo, 19 Aston Fortuin, 20 Thembelani Bholi, 21 Luyolo Dapula, 22 Josh Aldermann, 23 Courtney Winnaar.
Photo: Johan Pretorius/Gallo Images
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