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LionsThe Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has announced his team to take on the Sharks in a Super Rugby warm up game at Ellis Park on Friday evening.

Ackermann has opted to make wholesale changes to the side that narrowly beat the Kings last weekend.

Media release

Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has announced a 26-man side to take on The Sharks at Ellis Park this Friday evening.

Ackermann has made wholesale changes to his team that beat the Southern Kings 12-19 in Port Elizabeth at the weekend.

He believes that the match will be the ideal opportunity to mix youth and experience, and will act as a learning curve for those that have not yet come into contact with a side as experienced as The Sharks’.

“Of course it is important for us to avoid further injuries so we have decided to rest some of our players,” Ackermann shared.

“However, I also believe Friday’s game will give some of our young players an opportunity to express themselves and gain some valuable experience. It will be a chance for them to put their hands up for the future.”

In the forwards, Jacques van Rooyen (loosehead), Warwick Tecklenburg (flank) and Willie Britz (eighthman) move up from the bench into the starting XV.

Bees Roux, Lourens Erasmus, Martin Muller and Ruaan Lerm have also been drafted in after solid performances during their Vodacom Cup warm-up game against the Blue Bulls in Polokwane, last Saturday.

Meanwhile, in the backline, Willie du Plessis moves into the starting line-up at flyhalf as Faf de Klerk comes in at scrumhalf. Alwyn Hollenbach and Stokkies Hanekom have been brought in in the midfield, while Deon van Rensburg will start at right wing. Coenie van Wyk comes in at fullback after Andries Coetzee suffered a knee injury during the game against the Southern Kings.

Alwyn Hollenbach will captain the side.

The match kicks off at 19:00.


Lions: 15 Coenie van Wyk, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Stokkies Hanekom, 12 Alwyn Hollenbach (Captain), 11 Chrysander Botha, 10 Wilie du Plessis, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Willie Britz, 7 Ruaan Lerm, 6 Warwick Tecklenburg, 5 Martin Muller, 4 Lourens Erasmus, 3 Bees Roux, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 Jacques van Rooyen
Replacements: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Corne Fourie, 19 Stephan Vermeulen, 20 Hugo Kloppers, 21 MB Lusaseni, 22 Stephan de Witt, 23 Ross Cronje, 24 JW Jonker, 25 Ruan Combrinck, 26 Deon Helberg.


It is interesting to note that Ackermann has opted to leave out a numner of players from the 26-man squad who would in all likelihood be considered as certain starters in the Lions Super Rugby starting line up.

These include the captain Warren Whiteley, scrumhalf Michael Bondesio, veteran lock Franco van der Merwe and loose forwards Derick Minnie and Jaco Kriel.

This would appear to be a somewhat experimental side, which Ackerman hopes will show him where his depth within his greater squad lies and also prevent possible injuries to players that he will be counting on to carry much of the load in the upcoming Super Rugby campaign.

10 Responses to Super Rugby warm-up: Lions team to face the Sharks

  • 1

    I think it is a mistake. This close to the start of the competition I would go for the best team to get some cohesion. If the Sharks lose the game it would be an embarrassment for the SA favourites.

  • 2

    Sharks are going in with a very strong team to get exactly what the Lions should have aimed for

  • 3

    @ Snoek:
    @ Gena_ZA:
    In some ways I agree with JA.

    Too many times in the past the Lions have won games like this and create within themselves an illusion that they are better than they actually are.

    No log points on offer on Friday night.

    Worry more about the 15 Feb. Give our fellow felines from Bloem a nice valentines kiss, a bunch of roses (seeing as it’s the city of roses), and a bloody good kick up the rear end. (I hope)

  • 4

    1 @ Snoek:
    Hello Stinkvis.

    I suppose it 6 of one and half a dozen of the other.

    Good time to really, really test the Lions depth in positions on one hand and a missed opportunity to get the actual run-on side for the season gelling together.

    Great fullback, excelent centre pairing, good front row and a spattering of real quality mixed with some who should struggle in Super Rugby.

  • 5

    3 @ Scrumdown:
    Who do you recon the final starting 15 would be for the Lions, their best run-on 15 to tackle the season, head-on?

  • 6

    @ grootblousmile:
    Hey GBS, wane laas het julle van oom Puma gehoor?

  • 7

    @ MacroBull:

    Ek neem aan hy treur nog vandag Lambie getrou het.
    Hy kan nie meer praat van “my Lambie” nie

  • 8

    6 @ MacroBull:
    Nee het nie van hom gehoor nie… dink hy is de moer in vir my en ‘n paar omdat ons eerlik was oor Lambie se swak vorm in 2013.

  • 9

    @ nortierd:
    haha shame ek mis die man.

    voorspoedige nuwe jaar nortie.

    Ek sien ons tweede krieket span is maar n poep in die wind.

  • 10

    @ MacroBull:

    Thanks, selfde jou kant.
    Dit lyk so, ons het nie regtig diepte nie, en vandat Kallis nou klaar is, gaan dit interessant wees.
    Ek dou verkies het dat hulle AB 4de laat kolf het en vir jong De Kock as paaltjiewagter en nr 7 kolwer gekies het


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