Province bring out their big guns for Griquas

Western Province coach Allister Coetzee has hauled out the big guns to deal with the threat posed by Currie Cup upstarts Griqualand West, in Kimberley, on Friday afternoon.

Dawie Theron’s unfashionable Griquas have surprised friend and foe alike this season by bagging the scalps of the Cheetahs and Lions on their four-match unbeaten trot which has taken them to the log of the Currie Cup log.

At this stage Griquas are the only unbeaten side left in the competition and head the log with a runaway margin of five points.

First choice crumhalf Dewaldt Duvenage returns to the side after a lay-off due a knee injury and replaces Conrad Hoffmann, who has been shifted out to the bench.

Bolla Conradie, the discarded Springbok, disappears from the 22-man match day squad.

In the pack, the vastly-improved Wicus Blaauw takes over from JD Moller at loosehead and New Zealand stand-out lock Chris Jack replaces Hilton Lobberts, who has been completely discarded.

The best thing about Tuesday’s team announcement in Bellville was that the workhorse second rower Adriaan Fondse is back on the scene after a length injury lay-off since the Super 14 season and will provide cover for Jack and Anton van Zyl from the bench.

Coetzee and his charges will be travelling to Kimberley in the knowledge that the Province suffered a shock defeat there last season.

“One has to give credit to Griquas, they’re playing well,” said Coetzee.

“We just have to make sure that we train well this week, they’ve got a well-balanced side and they’re a physical team.

“I hope we can go up there and upset the apple cart.”

WP team:

Joe Pietersen; Tonderai Chavhanga, Juan de Jongh, Peter Grant, Gio Aplon; Willem de Waal, Dewaldt Duvenage; Luke Watson (captain), Francois Louw, Duane Vermeulen, Anton van Zyl, Chris Jack, Brok Harris, Tiaan Liebenberg and Wicus Blaauw.

Reserves: Deon Fourie, JD Moller, Adriaan Fondse, Pieter Louw, Conrad Hoffmann, Morgan Newman and Frikkie Welsh.

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