Siya Kolisi will lead a Sharks XV bolstered by several Springboks, including Eben Etzebeth, when the Durbanites host Harlequins in their Champions Cup debut clash on Saturday.
Kolisi and Etzebeth missed last week’s Vodacom United Rugby Championship victory over Ospreys at Kings Park, but are now among eight Boks named in the starting lineup as Neil Powell’s troops look to get their first match of this new competition off to a winning start.
With Etzebeth back in the mix, Vincent Tshituka will revert back to the blindside flank, alongside Kolisi and Phepsi Buthelezi. Powell has retained much of the same backline as last week, with the only change seeing Werner Kok replacing Marnus Potgieter on the right wing.
This is a new and decisive test for the South African sides who have not had a taste of the Champions Cup rugby but the good showing of the SA teams in last year’s and again the current URC tournaments reflect their readiness to play, compete and succeed at this level.
Photo: Steve Haag/Gallo Images
?TEAM RELEASE ?
Here it is – the first ever Cell C Sharks team for the opening round of the Heineken Champions Cup clash at Hollywoodbets Kings Park!
— The Sharks (@SharksRugby) December 8, 2022
— SA Rugby magazine (@SARugbymag) December 8, 2022