Cavaliers confident of Currie Cup promotion

Boland Cavaliers’ director of coaching, Chester Williams, said he and his team are focused on maintaining their status as an Currie Cup Premier Division as they prepare for their crucial promotion/relegation match against the Pumas in Wellington on Saturday.

The hosts are aiming to defeat the First Division champions in the first of two Promotion/Relegation fixtures before travelling to Witbank for next Friday’s clash against the team who suffered only one defeat this season. “Staying in the Premier Division must be our objective,” said Williams.

“I believe we have a good chance against the Pumas. They have been doing well this season, but they’ve not played against any teams in the Premier Division. There is a difference in the quality of the two divisions.”

Williams has recalled Cavaliers utility back Justin Peach at fullback with first choice Hayden Groepes battling with concussion.

Flank Carel Hoffman has made a speedy recovery, also from concussion, and will partner Hilton Lobberts and Zandre Jordaan in the back row with Jordaan starting ahead of Junior Bester. Pumas coach Jimmy Stonehouse made two changes to the side that defeated the SWD Eagles in last weekend’s First Division final.

Flyhalf Valentine van Wyk tore knee ligaments at training earlier this week and has been replaced by Tiaan Marx. The only other change is the inclusion of Hendrick van der Nest, who replaces Juan Visser on the bench.

Eagles coach Johann Lerm has made two changes from the side that lost last weekend’s First Division final against the Pumas for Saturday’s promotion/relegation match against the Leopards in Potchefstroom.

Lerm has selected Dougie Hellmuth at scrumhalf in the place of Jandré Blom, who shifts to the bench. Up front, hooker Wayne Bennett will wear the number two jersey with Junior Leota also relegated to the bench. Former Springbok utility back Gaffie du Toit was unavailable for selection due to a calf injury.

Former Western Province flyhalf Ricardo Croy retains his place at flyhalf in the Eagles’ starting line up.

Leopards coach Chaka Willemse has also selected his strongest possible team. Fullback Danie Dames, centres Deon van Rensburg and Basil de Doncker, and eighthman RW Kember are back in the side. Lock Rynard Landman has recovered from injury and is back on the bench, as is loose-head prop Divan Kotze.



MJ Mentz, Braam Pretorius, Shaun Venter, Hyron Thyse, Allistair Kettledas, Tiaan Marx, Jacques Coetzee, Christo le Roux, Jaco Bouwer, Pieter Meyer, Marius Coetzee, Eduan van der Walt, Ashley Buys, Hannes Franklin (c), Ronnie Uys.

Replacements: Corne Steenkamp, Dawie Steyn, De Jay Terblanche, Johan van Heerden, Martin Sithole, Hendrik van der Nest, Ashwin Scott.

Leopards –

Danie Dames, Jovan Bowles, Deon van Rensburg, Basil de Doncker, Shuaib Samaai, Cecil Dumont, Michael Bondesio, RW Kember, Thabo Mamojele, Wilhelm Koch (c), Draad Linde, Brad Mockford, Os van der Walt, Gavin Williamson, Nardus Lombard.

Replacements: Pellow van der Westhuizen, Divan Kotze, Rynard Landman, Bennie Adams, Theo van Wyk, Clayton Durand, Colin Lloyd.

Boland Cavaliers –

Justin Peach, Wendal Wehr, PJ Vermeulen, Cornal Hendricks, Deon Scholtz, Elgar Watts, Marnus Hugo, Zandré Jordaan, Hilton Lobberts, Carel Hoffman, George Earl, Rito Hlungwane (c), Jacobie Adriaanse, Harry Vermaas, Janro van Niekerk.

Replacements: Clemen Lewis, Michael de Neuilly-Rice, Angelo Brinkhuys, David Hendricks, Danie van der Merwe, Dewey Swartbooi, Danré Gerber.

SWD Eagles –

Bevin Fortuin (c), Norman Nelson, Bobby Joubert, Joe Breytenbach, Baldwin McBean, Ricardo Croy, Dougie Hellmuth, Jody Burch, Jacques Engelbrecht, Victor Joubert, Henry Grimes, Giant Mtyanda, Tiaan de Kock

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