Local club stars Fazeel Robertson and Labib Kannemeyer will be among six players making their senior DHL Western Province debut in the Currie Cup clash with the Cell C Sharks in Durban on Sunday.
DHL Western Province will be aiming to add to their two away wins at the start of the Currie Cup when they take on the home side at Hollywoodbets Kings Park at 14h00 on Sunday.
Wing Robertson, from St Georges RFC in Strand and scrumhalf Kannemeyer from SK Walmers are part of a group of eight local club players identified by Western Province Rugby’s High Performance Club Rugby programme.
Head of the programme Jerome Paarwater said that it is rewarding to see these players make the step-up to their senior debut.
“There has been a lot of work that went into identifying and developing our top club rugby talent, so to see Fazeel and Labib take their opportunity like this is fantastic.
“Both players have flourished as part of the professional environment and this just shows what can be achieved if we focus on making the most of the considerable talent in our club system,” he said.
Experienced centre Juan de Jongh will captain a team that will also see flank Paul de Villiers, lock Gary Poter, loose forward Armand Maritz and utility back Edward Coulson make their senior DHL Western Province debuts.
De Villiers and Maritz are the last two captains of the DHL Western Province U20 team, while Porter and Coulson are also products of the system having attended the Western Province Rugby Institute and represented DHL Western Province U19 in the past.
DHL Western Province Head Coach John Dobson said that it is encouraging to see more depth being created by both the integration of the club players and young players coming through the system.
“The club players have really impressed and both Fazeel and Labib deserve this opportunity. It is also really good to see our junior system bringing quality players through as well.
“These players will have some experienced heads around them, with two Springboks in our starting line-up, so we are looking forward to seeing what these combinations can produce in Durban on Sunday,” he said.
DHL Western Province: 15 Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu, 14 Fazeel Robertson, 13 Juan de Jongh (captain), 12 Bruce Sherwood, 11 Duncan Saal, 10 Kade Wolhuter, 9 Godlen Masimla, 8 Keke Morabe, 7 Junior Pokomela, 6 Paul de Villiers, 5 Gary Porter, 4 Connor Evans, 3 Sazi Sandi, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Ali Vermaak.
Replacements: 16 Andre-Hugo Venter, 17 Leon Lyons, 18 Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, 19 Dylan de Leeuw, 20 Louwan Horn, 21 Armand Maritz, 22 Labib Kennemeyer, 23 Eward Coulson.