Hollywoodbets Sharks gear up for coastal derby

Hollywoodbets Sharks gear up for coastal derby

Saturday’s return leg Vodacom United Rugby Championship clash between the Hollywoodbets Sharks and DHL Stormers at Hollywoodbets Kings Park promises to bring fireworks for the fans.

Derby matches always bring out the best in the two coastal teams and this match should be no different. The Stormers have enjoyed a good run in the tournament while the Hollywoodbets Sharks will be out to prove to their fans that amongst the frustrations, good things are coming.

“We haven’t found that real consistency to how we want to perform, although there have been periods where we’ve played some of our best rugby, and when we played the Stormers down in Cape Town, it was a really gutsy performance built around pressure and good defences, and we really stood up in that department,” explains head coach John Plumtree.

“We have to be really strong upfront, whether it’s at scrum time or mauls, we know we have a strong pack but I haven’t yet been able to put that pack out onto the park because of injuries to key players which has been probably my biggest frustration.

“In the future, we’ll get that part right, but we’ve had surgeries to six players in the tight five. It’s been a long season and we’ve been handicapped by so many injuries including Eben Etzebeth, who has had a knee procedure and will only be back in a few weeks. So it’s been really frustrating not being able to put out the pack that I’ve wanted to.”

The Hollywoodbets Sharks coach has the good fortune of welcoming back Rugby World Cup winning hooker Bongi Mbonambi from injury where he will feature alongside Coenie Oosthuizen and Vincent Tshituka also returns from a long-term injury off the bench, while replacement flyhalf Siya Masuku gets an opportunity to make his debut in the URC.

Plumtree admits that, “Ultimately, we’re looking for some consistency in our performances to find some real confidence and belief in how we can play this game and at times we have shown that.”

Hollywoodbets Sharks
1. Ox Nche
2. Fez Mbatha
3. Hanro Jacobs
4. Le Roux Roets
5. Gerbrandt Grobler
6. James Venter
7. Lappies Labuschagne
8. Phepsi Buthelezi
9. Jaden Hendrikse
10. Curwin Bosch
11. Makazole Mapimpi
12. Francois Venter 
13. Lukhanyo Am (c)
14. Werner Kok
15. Aphelele Fassi

16. Bongi Mbonambi
17. Ntuthuko Mchunu
18. Coenie Oosthuizen
19. Hyron Andrews
20. Vincent Tshituka
21. Bradley Davids
22. Siya Masuka*
23. Aphiwe Dyantyi

*Denotes debut for the Hollywoodbets Sharks

Players not available for selection due to injury 
•    Cameron Wright
•    Dylan Richardson 
•    Emile van Heerden
•    Muller du Plessis
•    Nevaldo Fleurs 
•    Reniel Hugo 
•    Sikhumbuzo Notshe
•    Vincent Koch 

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