Competition Time Again

The second round of the SA Rugby Under 19 Championship kicks off for the Cell C Sharks Under 19s as they host the Eastern Province Elephants on Saturday, while the SA Rugby Under 21 Championship commences this weekend for our Cell C Sharks Under 21s when they take on the Eastern Province Kings straight after the U/19 match on KP2, at JONSSON KINGS PARK.
The Cell C Sharks Under 19s will look to build on a 52-0 first round victory over EP, but warns head coach Sean Everitt, his charges can expect much tougher opposition this time round.

“EP were well-beaten by the Lions in their first-round fixture but in the return leg last week, they turned it around and were much more competitive, so, like the rest of the teams in the competition, we are expecting improvement from EP in the second half of the competition.”

He adds that they’re looking forward to the challenge against a better EP side, “that has been strengthened by returning University players who weren’t there in the first-round match. They have also included their top schoolboys and as we know, the Eastern Cape produces very good rugby players. We’re under no false illusions as to what we need to do. But our focus is on improving, more so than on our opposition.”

Having surged to the top of the log as the halfway point of the competition, Everitt admits that the unbeaten run so far has proved to be hugely motivating for his side and they will look to continue to fulfil the goals they set for themselves at the beginning of the season.

“The three areas we highlighted were performance, improvement and enjoyment, that’s been our focus throughout,” he explains. “If we continue to improve, then the players will put themselves in line for higher honours later in their careers.”

Having beaten every other team in the competition so far, clearly this team is on the right track. But it’s not only down to ability, talent and skill, but also a philosophy that preaches team-work and brotherhood over individual glory.

“We have a good bunch of players, there is no doubt this is a talented group and we have a strong culture within the team; the players know where they are going, they respect each other, and they know that they have to perform for each other, rather than the result.

“This is a special group.”

The Under 19s play at 11am with the Under 21s getting their campaign off at 1pm.

The Cell C Sharks Under 19s
1. James Scott
2. Fez Mbatha
3. Francois Klopper
4. Lappies Labuschagne
5. JJ van der Mescht
6. Vian Fourie
7. Dylan Richardson
8. Phepsi Buthelezi (C)
9. Sanele Nohamba
10. Murray Koster
11. Asanda Kunene
12. DJ Falconer
13. Muller du Plessis
14. Caleb Dingaan
15. Thaakir Abrahams

Replacements

16 Cole Haggard
17 Adriaan Staples
18 Dre Engelbrecht
19 Nachos Vidal
20 Adam Mountford
21 Matt Doyle
22 Boeta Chamberlain
23 Onke Jiba

The Cell C Sharks Under 21s
1. Jordan Els
2. Franco Botha
3. Jean-Pierre Smith
4. Dylan Weideman
5. William Squires
6. Cornelius Otto (c)
7. Jacques Ackerman
8. Marco Palvie
9. Gareth Simpson
10. Gert Cronje
11. Ilunga Mukendi
12. Khail Kotzenberg
13. James Tedder
14. Mfundo Ndhlovu
15. Courtney Winnaar

Replacements

16. Matt Wiseman
17. Christiaan de Jager
18. Heinrich Brendel
19. Austin Brummer
20. Xavier Swartbooi
21. Sicelo Tole
22.  Chuiner van Rooyen