Roux continues rotation for third warm-up
April 07, 2017

DHL Stormers flyhalf Damian Willemse will start in the Junior Springboks’ No 10 jersey on Saturday against the Toyota Free State Cheetahs in their final warm-up match on their training camp as coach Chean Roux continues his player rotation policy.

With Roux set to name his 28-man squad to travel to Georgia for the World Rugby U20 Championship in two weeks’ time, the SA U20 coach stuck to his plan to give all the players in the squad a chance to stake a claim for a place in the final squad.

Only three players named in the starting team were in the run-on side against the Down Touch Griffons on Wednesday, namely Manie Libbok, who moves from wing to fullback, Wandisile Simelane, who switches from centre to wing and David Brits, who will start at outside centre.

Flanker Nama Xaba, who will lead the team, was initially named in the squad to play in Welkom, but he was forced to withdraw before the match due to illness.

The 26-man match-day squad includes five players who were members of the Junior Springbok squad that travelled to Manchester last year. They are Libbok, Embrose Papier, Ruben de Villiers, Kwenzo Blose and Carlu Sadie.

“Our plan from the outset was to give everyone a fair chance to play, and we are excited to see what these players have to offer against a quality Cheetahs outfit,” said Roux.

“This match will serve as a tough test from a physical and mental point of view, and that was our objective as we look to test the players under pressure while at the same time preparing them for what they can expect in Georgia.”

Papier will pair up with Willemse, who made his debut for the DHL Stormers in the Vodacom Super Rugby competition last month, at halfback.

DHL Western Province prop Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, meanwhile, will start alongside the Toyota Free State Cheetahs duo of prop Blose and hooker Marnus van der Merwe in the front row, while De Villiers joins forces with Reinhard Nothnagel in the engine room. The loose trio will feature No 8 Len Massyn and flankers Hacjivah Dayimani and Xaba.

Roux is expecting a physical battle against the Toyota Free State Cheetahs, and said the match would serve as a solid test for his team.

“The battle up-front is going to be big as the Cheetahs have named a very physical pack, but they also have a classy backline, so we need to deliver a quality performance in all the areas of our game,” said Roux.

“We were tested on defence in the last two matches, and we expect another big challenge in this department against the Cheetahs. We still have a lot of work to do on our set pieces, but this match will offer the perfect opportunity to measure where we are in that regard. We know we will have our work cut out against the Cheetahs, but we are looking forward to the match.”

The match will kick off at 15h00 at Shimla Park and entrance is free. 

Junior Springbok team to face the Toyota Free State Cheetahs:





Manie Libbok

Vodacom Blue Bulls


Wandisile Simelane

Xerox Golden Lions


David Brits

DHL Western Province


Cornel Smit

DHL Western Province


Ilunga Mukendi

Cell C Sharks


Damian Willemse

DHL Western Province


Embrose Papier

Vodacom Blue Bulls


Len Massyn

Xerox Golden Lions


Hacjivah Dayimani

Xerox Golden Lions


Nama Xaba

DHL Western Province


Reinhard Nothnagel

Xerox Golden Lions


Ruben de Villiers

DHL Western Province


Lee-Marvin Mazibuko

DHL Western Province


Marnus van der Merwe

Toyota Free State Cheetahs


Kwenzo Blose

Toyota Free State Cheetahs





PJ Botha

Xerox Golden Lions


Wikus Groenewald

DHL Western Province


Carlu Sadie

DHL Western Province


Ewan Coetzee

Toyota Free State Cheetahs


Muller Uys

DHL Western Province


Juarno Augustus

DHL Western Province


Rewan Kruger

Toyota Free State Cheetahs


Jean-Luc Cilliers

Xerox Golden Lions


Wayne van der Bank

Xerox Golden Lions


Daniel Jooste

DHL Western Province


Boan Venter

Toyota Free State Cheetahs



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