Coenie to miss Cheetahs’ opener

Coenie and Caylib Oosthuizen will play no part in the Free State Cheetahs' Currie Cup match against the Pumas in Nelspruit on Saturday.

With Trevor Nyakane and Adriaan Strauss involved with the Boks, and both Oosthuizens ruled out through injury, new coach Rory Duncan has been forced to field a new-look front row against the Pumas.

Torsten van Jaarsveld will lead the side from hooker, while Luan de Bruin and Kevin Stevens will start on either side of him.

In the backs, Willie du Plessis gets the nod over Elgar Wats, with Sarel Pretorius starting on his inside. Rayno Benjamin, who impressed at centre during the Super Rugby season, will start on the right wing, with last year's top try-scorer Raymond Rhule on the left.

Free State Cheetahs – 15 AJ Coertzen, 14 Rayno Benjamin, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Joubert Engelbrecht, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Willie du Plessis, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Boom Prinsloo, 7 Neil Claasen, 6 Tienie Burger, 5 Francois Uys, 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Luan de Bruin, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld (c), 1 Kevin Stevens.
Subs: 16 Hercu Liebenburg, 17 Bees Roux, 18 Waltie Vermeulen, 19 Henco Venter, 20 Renier Botha, 21 Elgar Watts, 22 JP du Plessis.

Photo: Gerhard Steenkamp/BackpagePix