Flyhalf Elgar Watts will make his 1st start for the Eastern Province Kings for their match against the Vodacom Blue Bulls in Pretoria on Friday.
The talented Watts, who replaces Karlo Aspeling, has played from the bench in the Kings’ last 2 matches and now gets a chance to establish himself as the frontrunner for the pivot position.
“We feel that Elgar has picked up enough rhythm and confidence to start against the Bulls and we will be looking to him to get things going,” Kings coach Brent Janse van Rensburg said.
In 2 changes to the forwards, flank Thembelani Bholi and prop Lizo Gqoboka are back in the starting line-up, replacing Paul Schoeman and Schalk Ferreira respectively.
The Cheetahs have paid the price for a bruising win against the Griquas on Saturday with Luan de Bruin, Elgar Watts and Johannes “Boom” Prinsloo looking set to miss their clash against the Sharks.
The Free State Stadium turned into a minor battlefield on Saturday with medical teams having to stretcher players off on more than one occasion.
This is the 6th in the series of Cheetahs Squad Contenders for Super Rugby 2014. We do 2 articles per week per South African Super Rugby participating franchise.
We discuss the players IN the Super Rugby Group, and not all the options beyond that.
In this Article we look at the contenders for FLYHALVES in the Toyota Cheetahs 2014 Super Rugby group, and whether they could force their way into Bok contention.
Burton Francis, the much travelled 26-year old Griquas flyhalf, will fly in to join the Toyota Cheetahs on their Australasian Tour to replace the injured Elgar Watts.
Francis recently joined Griquas after initially forming part of the Southern Kings wider training group in the pre-season.
Looking at the pivotal position of flyhalf, the Cheetahs were derailed last year, by the long term injury to Johan Goosen, and the sudden loss of confidence by replacement Sias Ebersohn. The knock on effect for the Cheetahs was debilitating, to say the least. A repeat must be prevented.
Seasoned Boland flyhalf Elgar Watts will join the Cheetahs at the end of November for the 2013 season. Initially the Cheetahs hoped to have Sias Ebersohn released to the Cheetahs after the Super Rugby season, but new Force coach Foley wasn’t amenable to such an arrangement. Hence the Cheetahs will have Johan Goosen, Elgar Watts and Francois Brummer as the flyhalves to choose from, with Willie le Roux, and Riaan Smit able to slot in at flyhalf in an emergency.
The Cheetahs have acquired the services of Boland Cavaliers pivot Elgar Watts to prevent a possible flyhalf crisis.
Sonny Bill Williams has withdrawn from the Baa-Baas and is replaced by Richard Kahui.
Drew Mitchel is injured again and expected to miss the opening Rounds of Super Rugby.
Conrad Smith is named as Hurricanes Captain for 2012.
Derick Hougaard could be back at the Bulls.
Bolla Conradie, Elgar Watts & Clemen Lewis, all from Boland, as well as Burton Francis are included in Stormers plans for 2012.
Graham Henry rules out England coaching job.
Defending champions Hamiltons of Western Province and 12-time winners Maties will clash in a crunch semifinal at the SAA National Club Champs after both sides powered through their last-eight matches at the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch on Monday.
This year’s Club Champs takes place at Maties from Saturday 18 to Friday 24 September and, in addition to Hammies and Noordelike, will feature the country’s 14 provincial champions in a 16-team first-round draw.