Coetzee names Province Currie Cup squad for opener

Western Province Currie Cup coach Allister Coetzee has announced a 26-man squad ahead of this weekend’s Currie Cup opener against the Blue Bulls in Cape Town.

WP under-21 players Stephan Coetzee (hooker), Gerbrandt Grobler (lock), Tim Swiel (flyhalf), Pat Howard (centre) and Cheslin Kolbe (fullback) have been selected along with the uncapped University of Stellenbosch (Maties) duo of Alistair Vermaak (prop) and Ryan Nell (utility back).

“The door is by no means closed on anyone else who has been training here these past few weeks, but I needed to focus on a core group of players with the eye on the first game,” said Coetzee.

Springboks Pat Cilliers (prop) and Gio Aplon (wing/fullback) were also included in the squad to face the Bulls, with WP being captained by flanker Deon Fourie.

“We have Pat and Gio available to us this week, but are without the rest of our Springboks who have been selected in the Rugby Championship squad,” Coetzee said.

“I am happy with our preparations and we’re looking forward to Saturday’s match against the Bulls.

“North/South derbies are always big games and we’re not expecting anything different come this weekend. We’re excited to be starting our campaign at home.”

The WP coach will announce his matchday-22 on Wednesday.

The WP squad preparing to face the Blue Bulls (26):

Forwards (13):
Scarra Ntubeni
Stephan Coetzee
Steven Kitshoff
Alistair Vermaak
Pat Cilliers
Brok Harris
Gerbrandt Grobler
De Kock Steenkamp
Ruan Kitshoff
Deon Fourie (captain)
Michael Rhodes
Rynhardt Elstadt
Nizaam Carr

Backs (13):
Louis Schreuder
Nic Groom
Gary van Aswegen
Tim Swiel
Kurt Coleman
Berton Klaasen
Damian de Allende
Pat Howard
Ryan Nell
Gerhard van den Heever
Ederies Arendse
Cheslin Kolbe
Gio Aplon

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