Burger back for WP in Currie Cup Semi-final

Western Province head coach Allister Coetzee has named Schalk Burger as captain for his team’s Currie Cup Semi-final against the Lions at Coca-Cola Park in Johannesburg.

Western Province rugby coach Allister Coetzee says he is positive his team
will do well in a Currie Cup semi-final against the Lions at Ellis Park on Saturday.

“We are under no illusions about what we will be in for in Joburg but
we’ve prepared well,” said Coetzee.

“We are taking a good team up there and the players will have to taken
ownership (of the task of beating the Lions).”

Coetzee named Jaque Fourie and talisman flanker Schalk Burger in their starting
line-up in Bellville on Wednesday.

The world-class midfielder Fourie played off the substitutes’ bench last week
shortly after his return from the Springboks’ disastrous World Cup campaign
in New Zealand.

He replaces fellow Springbok Juan de Jongh, who has been moved out to the bench.

Burger replaces Pieter Louw and will once again skipper the side in their crucial
semi-final match.

“It’s nice to have our captain back and he’s one that leads from the front,”
said Coetzee.

Burger made his 2011 Currie Cup debut when he joined the fray in the final
20 minutes against the Pumas last week.

“I only just had a few minutes of Currie Cup rugby this season but I can
see that we will have to play well against the Lions,” said Burger.

Another change in the pack is in the second row where De Kock Steenkamp returns,
while lock Adriaan Fondse has been retained and will make the line-out calls
on Saturday.

“We were not happy with our set-piece last week (against the Pumas) but
we’ve worked on it this week and we know we have to be accurate,” said
Coetzee.

“Execution and accuracy is going to be important. The simpler we keep
our play the better it will be for us.

“We didn’t finish well against the Leopards and that won’t happen again.”

Coetzee said he would not read too much into the Lions’ crushing 53-9 defeat
to the Sharks last week because they went into that match knowing that the outcome
had no bearing on their number-one log position.

Three weeks ago, the Lions mauled Province with a 42-25 win in a league match
in Johannesburg.

This time, the Cape side will be significantly strengthened by the inclusion
of Springboks Burger, Fourie, De Jongh, Gio Aplon, Jean de Villiers and Bryan
Habana.

Burger said it was important for him and his fellow forwards to keep the Lions
pack in check, otherwise his powerful backline won’t come into play.

“The forwards will have to take responsibility because it all starts upfront,”
said Burger.

“If the forwards don’t lay a sound platform then the performance of the
backs will be nullified. The forwards have a huge responsibility.”

Western Province:


15 Gio Aplon, 14 JJ Engelbrecht, 13 Jaque Fourie, 12 Jean De Villiers, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Nick Koster, 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Schalk Burger (captain), 5 De Kock Steenkamp, 4 Adriaan Fondse, 3 Brok Harris, 2 Tiaan Liebenberg, 1 JC Kritzinger


Substitutes: 16 Deon Fourie, 17 Frans Malherbe, 18 Tertius Daniller, 19 Pieter Louw, 20 Louis Schreuder, 21 Juan de Jongh, 22 Conrad Jantjes


Lions

15 Jaco Taute,14 Deon Van Rensburg,13 Doppies La Grange,12 Alwyn Hollenbach,11
Michael Killian,10 Elton Jantjies,9 Michael Bondesio,8 Joshua Strauss (c),7
Michae Rhodes,6 Derick Minnie,5 Franco Van der Merwe,4 Wikus Van Heerden,3 Patric
Cilliers,2 Bandise Maku,1 CJ Van der Linde

Reserves:16 Martin Bezuidenhout,17 Jacobie Adriaanse,18 Warren Whiteley,19
Cobus Grobbelaar /Jaco Kriel,20 Butch James,21 Dylan Des Fountain,22 James Kamana

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