Springbok Rugby World Cup winning prop Trevor Nyakane will anchor the scrum in the only change to the Vodacom Bulls starting team for their outing against the DHL Stormers at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday evening.
The starting team will no doubt lean toward the abrasive yet dynamic style of play that former Junior Springbok lock forward Ruan Nortje brings to the table. The talented youngster has made 20 carries and 21 tackles thus far and is one of only two players to do so after three rounds of action.
The only change amongst the replacements sees Springbok loose forward Nizaam Carr replacing fellow Springbok Arno Botha.
“The Stormers tend to be our measuring stick and beating them is non-negotiable amongst the players,” said Vodacom Bulls Director of Rugby, Jake White.
Springbok loosehead prop Steven Kitshoff will captain the DHL Stormers for their visit to the capital.
Kitshoff takes over the captaincy from Siya Kolisi, who has been ruled out with a hamstring injury.
Jaco Coetzee, meanwhile, replaces Kolisi on the side of the scrum, while JD Schickerling will start at lock in the only other change to the forward pack.
DHL Stormers Head Coach John Dobson said that his side is looking forward to testing themselves in what should be another North-South classic.
“This match is one of the highlights on the South African rugby calendar, so we are looking forward to taking on that challenge this weekend,” said Dobson.
Vodacom Bulls: 15 David Kriel, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13. Stedman Gans, 12 Cornal Hendricks, 11 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Duane Vermeulen (C), 7 Elrigh Louw, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Jason Jenkins, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Joe van Zyl, 17 Gerhard Steenekamp, 18 Marcel van der Merwe, 19 Sintu Manjezi, 20 Nizaam Carr, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Chris Smith, 23 Marco Jansen van Vuren.
DHL Stormers team: 15. Warrick Gelant, 14. Edwill van der Merwe, 13. Dan du Plessis, 12. Rikus Pretorius, 11. Leolin Zas, 10. Damian Willemse, 9. Herschel Jantjies, 8. Juarno Augustus, 7. Ernst van Rhyn, 6. Jaco Coetzee, 5. JD Schickerling, 4. Salmaan Moerat, 3. Frans Malherbe, 2. Bongi Mbonambi, 1. Steven Kitshoff (C).
Replacements: 16. Scarra Ntubeni, 17. Leon Lyons, 18.Neethling Fouche, 19. Chris van Zyl, 20. David Meihuizen, 21. Marcel Theunissen, 22. Ben-Jason Dixon, 23. Godlen Masimla, 24. Tim Swiel, 25. Angelo Davids, 26. Tristan Leyds.
Match information – Vodacom Bulls v DHL Stormers:
Date: Saturday 31 October
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Referee: AJ Jacobs
Assistant referees: Aimee Barrett-Theron, Stuart Berry
Television Match Official: Jaco Peyper
TV: SuperSport Grandstand and Rugby