Southern Kings head coach Deon Davids has made five changes, and an additional positional switch, to his team ahead of the Vodacom Super Rugby clash against the Stormers at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Saturday (kickoff at 15h05).
Following a spate of injuries at lock, the Southern Kings were pleased to have Irne Herbst fit for the Cape derby, after the lofty second-rower recovered from a concussion that ruled him out of last weekend’s clash with the Sunwolves in Singapore.
The Southern Kings will also begin the match with a new flank combination, as opensider Chris Cloete and blindside loose-forward Thembelani Bholi get their first starts of the season.
With the Southern Kings losing both their scrumhalves to injury in Singapore last week – Louis Schreuder with a concussion and Rudi van Rooyen an ankle injury – Rick Schroeder will be getting his Vodacom Super Rugby debut on Saturday.
Centre Luzuko Vulindlu, who came off the bench in the Southern Kings’ first two matches of the season, will get a starting berth this weekend in a rotational change which sees Berton Klaasen moving to the bench.
Vulindlu will start in the No12 jersey and the experienced Waylon Murray, who played at inside centre in the past two matches, moving to outside centre.
“The guys understand that they have to grab their opportunities with both hands. It’s all about performing in the Kings jersey,” coach Davids said.
“Ricky (Schroeder) has been knocking on the door, and I’m glad he’s getting this opportunity now. He will have to make it worthwhile.
“I’ve rotated Luzuko Vulindlu and Berton Klaasen for our centre combination. I feel that Waylon Murray, with this experience, at No13 will be good for us.”
There will be a lot on offer on match-day at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium throughout the day.
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Business Development Manager, Raaziq Poole explained the fun-filled activities for the day, starting at 13h00 when gates open until 19h00.
“I think from a stadium management point of view, we are ready to host the Southern Kings versus DHL Stormers match. This is one of the big derbies for us to host, so we have a full family, fun day of activities that will take place,” Poole said.
“We have also teamed up with Future Kings, who will have an activation on our B-field, with about 400 kids who will participate. This is hopefully an initiative we will continue with all out Vodacom Super Rugby games. We will have a fun Fan Park with DJ’s until 19h00.
“With the Southern Kings coming from a win, we encourage people to come out and support the team to create a vibe and gees which will encourage the players to do even better on the field. We are fully committed and behind the team
Tickets are R60 (East Stand) and R80 (West Stand). Tickets are available at selected TicketPro outlets, online on www.ticketpros.co.za and at the TicketPro ticket office at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Prince Alfred Road.
SOUTHERN KINGS TEAM TO FACE DHL STORMERS:
15. Masixole Banda
14. Makazole Mapimpi
13. Waylon Murray
12. Luzuko Vulindlu
11. Malcolm Jaer
10. Lionel Cronje (V/C)
9. Rick Schroeder
8. Ruaan Lerm
7. Thembelani Bholi
6. Chris Cloete
5. Irne Herbst
4. Tyler Paul
3. Ross Geldenhuys
2. Michael Willemse
1. Schalk Ferreira (capt)
REPLACEMENTS: 16. Kurt Haupt, 17. Schalk van der Merwe, 18. Chris Heiberg, 19. Wilhelm van der Sluys, 20. Andisa Ntsila, 21. Johan Steyn, 22. Pieter-Steyn de Wet, 23. Berton Klaasen