Lions stick to the tried and tested combinations for Cheetahs opener


The Lions have stuck to the combinations that won CC2011 for their opener against the Cheetahs.

Former Maties hooker and captain Callie Visagie is the only new cap and newcomer to Super Rugby in the MTN Lions side start against the Cheetahs at Coca-Cola park on Saturday. With hooker Bandise Maku out for a lengthy period and Martin Bezuidenhout short of game time, Visage was an obvious choice. He will face Springbok hooker and Cheetahs captain Adriaan Strauss as direct opponent in the match. Michael Bondesio was part of the match squad last year, but gets his first chance to impress

Lions coach John Mitchell has stuck with his tried and tested. James Kamana starts on the left wing in place of Michael Killian who has not completely recovered from a hamstring strain. Killian has belatedly come onto the bench in place if Lionel Mapoe, who ironically had to withdraw because of a hamstring strain.

The word ‘fetcher’ is perhaps over-emphasised in South Africa, but they have two of the best in that position with Cobus Grobbelaar coming in because of injury to Michael Rhodes. He starts at No 6 with Minnie moving to the other side of the scrum

At lock, Franco van der Merwe returns to the side. Wikus van Heerden is bracketed with newcomer Hendrik Roodt because of uncertainty over his knee injury, and on the bench Jacobie Adriaanse has been withdrawn with Springbok CJ can der Linde taking his place on the bench. A final call on Van Heerden and Adriaanse will be made on Friday.

If Roodt has to start, Stephan Greeff will move up to the bench, where scrumhalf Tian Meyer is with Roodt the only new Lions face. Roodt gas played for the Waratahs and the Cheetahs and as an Under-21 was also a member of the Bulls squad.

The team is:

Jaco Taute, Deon van Rensburg, Doppies la Grange, Alwyn Hollenbach, James Kamana, Elton Jantjies, Michael Bondesio, Joshua Strauss (capt.), Derick Minnie, Cobus Grobbelaar, Franco van der Merwe, Wikus van Heerden/Hendrik Roodt, Patric Cilliers, Callie Visagie, JC Janse van Rensburg. Replacements: Martin Bezuidenhout, CJ van der Linde, Hendrik Roodt/Stephan Greeff, Warren Whiteley, Tiaan Meyer, Butch James, Michael Killian

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  1. Will be a bit of a f**kup for Lappe Laubscher and Pretorian co if the Lions do well in S15 and end above the Bulls…

    Do they then pack their bags and move south of the Jukskei to FNB Stadium?

  2. Good side this and should win comfortably …if the Lions have any aspirations to do well we should be beating this Cheetahs side.

  3. Uhm

    SASCOCK Constitution opening line…

    In terms of the Memorandum of Association, the main object is to promote and develop high performance sport in the Republic of South Africa as well as and to act as the controlling body for the preparation and delivery of Team South Africa at all multi-sport international games including but not limited to the Olympics, Paralympics, Commonwealth Games, World Games and All Africa Games

    Therefore not applicable to professional single sport tournaments…

    Dear all

    Thanks for playing