Sharks to rest Springbok trio against Western Force

The Sharks have revealed that they will rest their Springbok trio of Cobus Reinach, Marcell Coetzee and Pat Lambie for this week’s match against the Western Force.

The Sharks trio will be rested in line with the agreement with SA Rugby over player management for the Rugby world cup.

The Sharks expect to name Frans Steyn at flyhalf in Lambie’s place although they may decide not to break up the midfield partnership of Steyn and JP Pietersen.

If the pair remain at 12 and 13 respectively, either Fred Zeilinga or Lionel Cronje will step into the number 10 jersey after solid performances for the Cell C Sharks XV in their Vodacom Cup clash at Kings Park on Saturday.

“It’s a huge boost that we will have Frans available, it provides massive stability to the team, especially due to the changes we will have with the resting of the Springboks,” said assistant coach Paul Anthony on the Sharks site.

“We have to rest Cobus, Marcell and Pat, we have to work in the greater picture of the national team. They allowed us to play them last weekend, so it’s our turn to reciprocate in a sense.”

The loss of Lambie is a big one considering his contribution – both as a player and leader who took over the captaincy on Saturday.

“Effectively, the two week break will be good for him. He’s taking his rest week now which he thoroughly deserves because he’s been magnificent for us. We will miss him but we know the guys coming in will add value.”

There is an energetic feel about the team after two wins, two invaluable victories that came at just the right time.

“Going into that Cheetahs’ match, we put a mark on that game as the one where we really wanted to turn the ship around,” he explained.

“We knew it would take massive character to do that, and we managed to come away with the win. We just want to keep evolving every week and really put in a massive effort over the next three weeks, and obviously targeting this Saturday to deliver a massive game.

“With that character display behind us, if we can keep our discipline and mould that into a 15-man onslaught, that would be great. We really want to have a crack at it, but we know the Force will be hurting and just itching to come back after last weekend’s last-minute loss to the Bulls, so we will have to be mentally and physical prepared.”

Despite losing the rested Springboks, the team is ready for the challenge according to the coaches.

“We’ve prepared adequately because we knew they would have to be rested. We always had a rotation policy, so we were going to rest them anyway. ”

“Everyone in the squad is part of the package and they know they are all going to get a chance to play. We’ve planned for this, we’re ready. And we will be prepared for it in the future, because it’s going to happen again.

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