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Challenge Cup Finalists Sharks Turns Focus To URC

  • May 10, 2024
  • 2 min read
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Challenge Cup Finalists Sharks Turns Focus To URC

The Sharks return to Hollywoodbets Kings Park this Saturday for a Vodacom United Rugby Championship clash against Italian side Benetton.

Despite the switch in tournaments, the Sharks remain focused on season-long improvement and will use this match as a chance to refine their game.

Head coach John Plumtree has opted for continuity, keeping most of the team that defeated Clermont last weekend in the EPCR Challenge Cup.

The only changes come in the forwards, with Corne Rahl replacing Emile van Heerden, Gerbrandt Grobler starting at flank, and Vincent Tshituka shifting to eighthman in place of Phepsi Buthelezi. Francois Venter also comes in at centre for Ethan Hooker.

Assistant coach Warren Whitely emphasizes that while their title aspirations have shifted, the focus remains on improvement.

“We identified areas for improvement after reviewing the Clermont game,” Whitely explains. “This weekend presents an opportunity to be better, even with the change in competition. We need to improve for the final, and that’s where our focus lies – on being better than we were against Clermont and capitalizing on areas for growth.”

Hollywoodbets Sharks Line-up:

  1. Ox Nche
  2. Bongi Mbonambi
  3. Vincent Koch
  4. Eben Etzebeth
  5. Corne Rahl
  6. James Venter
  7. Gerbrandt Grobler
  8. Vincent Tshituka
  9. Grant Williams
  10. Siya Masuku
  11. Makazole Mapimpi
  12. Francois Venter
  13. Lukhanyo Am (Captain)
  14. Werner Kok
  15. Aphelele Fassi

Replacements:

  1. Fez Mbatha
  2. Ntuthuko Mchunu
  3. Hanro Jacobs
  4. Lappies Labuschagne
  5. Tino Mavesere
  6. Cameron Wright
  7. Boeta Chamberlain
  8. Diego Appolis

Unavailable Players:

  • Coenie Oosthuizen
  • Curwin Bosch
  • Dylan Richardson
  • George Cronje
  • Jaden Hendrikse
  • Phepsi Buthelezi
  • Marnus Potgieter
  • Muller du Plessis
  • Nevaldo Fleurs
  • Zee Mkhabela
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