Lions coach Ivan van Rooyen tweaks team to banish gremlins
After their diabolically poor performance against the Blue Bulls at Ellis Park last Saturday the Golden Lions have tinkered with their team to play the Sharks on Sunday.
The most significant addition is flank Cyle Brink who has recovered from a broken wrist.
“He brings a bit of experience‚” said coach Ivan van Rooyen. “It is nice to have him back. He brings a bit of calm and physical presence.”
At centre‚ Manni Rass will now partner Wandisile Simelane‚ while tighthead prop Frans van Wyk will make his debut for the Golden Lions in the match scheduled to kick off at 2pm.
He cracks the nod ahead of the vastly experienced Jacobie Adriaanse‚ who will start from the bench.
The team remains under the leadership of scrumhalf Ross Cronjé‚ who gave a calm but brutally honest assessment of his team’s performance in the aftermath of their 31-26 defeat at the hands of the 14‚ and at times 13-man‚ Blue Bulls last weekend.
On Friday‚ Van Rooyen was confident they had located the gremlins that wreaked havoc in their game last Saturday.
“We had a good review on Monday to get to the source of what happened. Tactically we weren’t smart enough and we put ourselves under pressure. Our organisation wasn’t good enough either.
“It wasn’t a lack of effort or energy. It’s decision making.”
He expects the Sharks to be every bit as physical as they always seem to be for matches at Ellis Park. “They are always physical. They thrive on momentum. It will be a physical clash.”
The Sharks will unleash rookie flyhalf Boeta Chamberlain at Ellis Park but the Lions say they know what they are in for.
“We know quite a bit about him. Sean [Erasmus] coached him. He’s a confidence player with a big boot‚ good pace‚ good feet. He’ll be a big challenge‚” said Van Rooyen.
Meanwhile No 8 Hacjivah Dayimani‚ scrumhalf Dillon Smit and hooker Pieter Jansen have all extended their contracts with the Lions.
Golden Lions team:
Tyrone Green; Madosh Tambwe‚ Wandisile Simelane‚ Manni Rass‚ Stean Pienaar; Shaun Reynolds‚ Ross Cronjé; (captain); Hacjivah Dayimani‚ Len Massyn‚ James Venter; Wilhelm van der Sluys‚ Ruben Schoeman; Frans van Wyk‚ Pieter Jansen‚ Sti Sithole
Jan-Henning Campher‚ Nathan McBeth‚ Jacobie Adriaanse‚ Rhyno Herbst‚ Cyle Brink‚ Marnus Schoeman; Dillon Smit‚ Duncan Matthews.
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