Sharks ring the changes for URC dead rubber against Cardiff

Sharks ring the changes for URC dead rubber against Cardiff

The Sharks have named four debutants in their matchday 23 to face Cardiff in their United Rugby Championship fixture at Kings Park on Saturday.

With next weekend's EPCR Challenge Cup Final against Gloucester in London, the Sharks side for this week's match against the Welsh is a much-changed side, while the rest of the squad makes the trip north in preparation for the big final.

The emphasis this season has been on a squad effort, rather than separate teams for different competitions and the players who receive this opportunity have been part of the training squad throughout.

They now get the chance to shine, having contributed positively and invaluably over the course of the last two campaigns. Their inclusion also adds depth for the future.

Forwards Simon Miller, Braam Reyneke, IG Prinsloo and Thomas Dyer are set for their debuts on Saturday in front of their home fans. Meanwhile, No.8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe earns his 50th cap for the Sharks in international competition. 

Cardiff and the Sharks have both accumulated 25 log points, with the Durban side keen to put in a good showing in this, their penultimate home game of the tournament.

"We've given guys an opportunity to put their hands up and play well, to give the team that goes to Gloucester good momentum going forward," explains Sharks defence coach Joey Mongalo.

"Hopefully the way these guys account of themselves is a true reflection of where we are and how far we've come as a collective."

Forwards Braam Reynekemakes his debut for the Sharks, while 

Reniel Hugo leads the team against a side that Mongalo warns need to be respected.

"They have specific individuals who have good 'defenders beaten' stats which we've looked at, and that comes from a good set-piece. So, if your set-piece is dominant, the defence is going backwards and you're going forwards, you're likely to gain momentum and line-breaks.

"Even though they've lost games, the losing margin has been narrow, even against top sides. They're a solid unit and will want to impose their game on the opposition."

Sharks - 15 Boeta Chamberlain, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Diego Appollis, 12 Eduan Keyter, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Tiaan Fourie, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Simon Miller, 6 Tino Mavesere, 5 Reniel Hugo (c), 4 Corne Rahl, 3 Khwezi Mona, 2 Dylan Richardson, 1 Dian Bleuler

Replacements: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Braam Reyneke, 18 IG Prinsloo, 19 Thomas Dyer, 20 Nick Hatton, 21 Bradley Davids, 22 Curwin Bosch, 23 Anthony Volmink

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