Although it may not be the last time we see the likes of Bismarck and Jannie du Plessis at Growthpoint KINGS PARK, Saturday’s match against the Stormers may well be their last in the colours of the Cell C Sharks.
Whilst hinting that ‘you never know what might happen in the future’, Bismarck du Plessis has paid a tribute to the team where he has played all his professional rugby, and will, on Saturday, run out together with brother Jannie and their Sharks’ brother Beast Mtawarira in their final hurrah as one of world rugby’s most formidable front rows.
It will also be the last time to see ‘The Bone Collector’ – Willem Alberts – who will also feature in his last match for the Durban side.
Loathe to make this match about himself, Bismarck this week spoke of avoiding the limelight, explaining, “I don’t play for any accolades, I just play for my teammates and the respect I have for the guys who play with me.
“This is going to be a very sad day to be leaving The Sharks, I guess I never thought this day would arrive. I’m a Sharks boy through and through, I love the Sharks with all my heart.”
Bismarck du Plessis said “I’m the biggest Sharks fan and always will be. It’s about being the best and staying at the top of your game. It’s always about those succession plans when somebody leaves, and when someone comes in and whether he will be able to do the job.
“But I think the Cell C Sharks are in a great space and I don’t think there is any better culture or place to play rugby.
“For me, I am a passionate Shark; I don’t know where I will be heading exactly. I’m a very principle-based guy and I won’t go anywhere else. If ever I get the opportunity to come back again, and the coaching staff think I can add value, I will most likely take them up on that offer. I will miss this place with everything I have.”
Cell C Sharks: 15 Lwazi Mvovo, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 JP Pietersen, 12 André Esterhuizen, 11 S’bura Sithole, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Renaldo Bothma, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Marco Wentzel (Captain), 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Dale Chadwick, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Lubabalo ‘Giant’ Mtyanda, 20 Khaya Majola, 21 Conrad Hoffmann, 22 Fred Zeilinga, 23 Heimar Williams.
Date: Saturday 13 June
Venue: Kings Park, Durban
Kick-Off: 19:10 SA Time (17:10 GMT)
Referee: Glen Jackson
Assistant Referees: Quinton Immelman, Archie Sehlako
TMO: Marius Jonker