Sharks director of rugby Gary Gold has made four changes to his starting XV for Saturday’s clash with the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.
All four personnel changes have been made in the pack, with a return to the all Springbok front row of Jannie du Plessis – back after being given last week off with the birth of his child – his brother and captain Bismarck du Plessis and Beast Mtawarira.
Mouritz Botha is also back after an eye socket injury sustained in the opening round match against the Cheetahs, the first leg going the way of the Free State side, and the English international will pack down alongside Springbok Pieter-Steph du Toit in the second row.
The final change is in the back row where Renaldo Bothma comes in for Willem Alberts who is out of the matchday squad due to injury.
Sharks: 15 SP Marais, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 JP Pietersen, 12 Francois Steyn, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Ryan Kankowski, 7 Renaldo Bothma, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis (c), 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Dale Chadwick/Thomas du Toit, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Marco Wentzel/Lubabalo Mtyanda, 20 Tera Mtembu, 21 Conrad Hoffmann, 22 Andre Esterhuizen, 23 Jack Wilson.
Date: Saturday, Match 14
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 17.05 (15.05 GMT, 04.05 NZST, 02.05 AEST)
Referee: Chris Pollock (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Jaco van Heerden (South Africa), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
Television match official: Johan Greeff (South Africa)