Kotze starts at 13 for W.Province in Currie Cup

Western Province backline ace Johnny Kotze has been entrusted with the No.13
jersey for Saturday’s Currie Cup clash against the Blue Bulls at Loftus Versfeld

Kotze, 22, replaces the injured Juan de Jongh at outside centre in the only
starting change from last weekend’s hard-fought 9-3 win over the Free State
Cheetahs in Cape Town.

Kotze made eight Super Rugby starts for the Stormers earlier this season
(on the wing), but this will be his first Currie Cup start – having made his
tournament debut off the bench two weeks ago against Griquas.

“It was always our intention to get Johnny into the No.13 jersey at some
point, but, of course, it has now been necessitated by Juan’s injury, ”
said Western Province coach John Dobson

“We certainly are very excited about this opportunity for Johnny – he
is a skilful and level-headed player and I have no doubt he will flourish at
this level. “

There are also three changes on the Province bench this week, with Springbok
squad member Scarra Ntubeni replacing Marius Fourie as the hooker replacement,
Chris van Zyl replacing fellow lock Jan de Klerk and Huw Jones coming in for
Kobus van Wyk as specialist centre cover.

Jones will be on Currie Cup debut for Western Province, despite making
14 appearances for the Stormers this year.

Dobson added: “With Juan out we need cover at inside centre and Huw gives
us a great option off the bench in that position.

“It was a tough call leaving Kobus out, but we have picked a team we believe
can do the job for us at Loftus Versfeld in what should be a fast-paced encounter. “

WP (third place on the log), the Lions (second) and the Bulls (first place)
are the only remaining unbeaten teams after two rounds of 2015 Currie Cup action
and Dobson is expecting a hard-fought North-South Derby in the ‘Bullring’.

“This won’t be a typical North-South Derby in that the Bulls are evolving
as a team under their new coaching staff, ” he said.

“We’re certainly looking forward to the challenge of playing in Pretoria
– a full Loftus Versfeld in a North-South Derby is one of the most beautiful
sights in South African rugby, plus a dry, fast pitch will lead to a more open
game… unlike last week’s tough one in the wet. “

Western Province

15. Cheslin Kolbe ,
14. Dillyn Leyds ,
13. Johnny Kotze ( Currie Cup starting debut for WP) ,
12. Jaco Taute ,
11. Seabelo Senatla ,
10. Demetri Catrakilis ,
9. Nic Groom (vice-captain) ,
8. Nizaam Carr (captain) ,
7. Sikhumbuzo Notshe ,
6. Rynhardt Elstadt ,
5. Ruan Botha ,
4. Jean Kleyn ,
3. Wilco Louw ,
2. Bongi Mbonambi ,
1. Oli Kebble

Replacements: , 16. Scarra Ntubeni , 17. Alistair Vermaak , 18. Chris van
Zyl , 19. Chris Cloete , 20. Jano Vermaak , 21. Kurt Coleman , 22. Huw Jones
(On Currie Cup debut for WP)

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