Knock-out Rugby

The Cell C Sharks take on Leinster in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship quarter-finals at Aviva Stadium on Saturday with the tournament heading towards its climax.

Cell C Sharks Director of Rugby Neil Powell has had his hand forced in naming a changed line-up following the loss of Springbok captain Siya Kolisi and flyhalf Curwin Bosch who sustained injuries in the final pool game against Munster at Hollywoodbets Kings Park a fortnight ago. Lukhanyo Am takes over the captaincy in Kolisi’s absence.

James Venter replaces Kolisi, while Boeta Chamberlain moves from fullback to flyhalf to accommodate the loss of Bosch, with Aphelele Fassi starting at fullback.

In other changes, after a string of impressive performances in the Currie Cup recently ,Corne Rahl returns to the side, having made his VURC debut earlier in the season against Connacht, the 20-year old is in for Jeandre Labuschagne who plays off the bench, while Marnus Potgieter replaces Werner Kok on the wing.

With Leinster having clinched top spot and enjoying home ground advantage, they come into this game as favourites, which is not something that really bothers Cell C Sharks lock Gerbrandt Grobler.

“No-one gives us a chance, and that’s OK, we have a job to do and we believe in it, because if you don’t believe it, you can’t achieve it,” he explained from the team’s base in Dublin. “We have nothing to lose and we’ll be throwing everything into it.”

He is equally philosophical about his team’s underdog status, saying: “What do you do, no-one gives you a chance, your back is against the wall, we’ll be going for it, why not believe? Anything can happen on the day: the bounce of the ball, a decision that goes your way, we’re going out there to give our best and enjoy ourselves.”

Cell C Sharks

  1. Ox Nche
  2. Bongi Mbonambi
  3. Thomas du Toit
  4. Corne Rahl
  5. Gerbrandt Grobler
  6. James Venter
  7. Vincent Tshituka
  8. Sikhumbuzo Notshe
  9. Grant Williams
  10. Boeta Chamberlain
  11. Makazole Mapimpi
  12. Ben Tapuai
  13. Lukhanyo Am (c)
  14. Marnus Potgieter
  15. Aphelele Fassi


  1. Fez Mbatha
  2. Ntuthuko Mchunu
  3. Carlu Sadie
  4. Jeandre Labuschagne
  5. Phepsi Buthelezi
  6. Cameron Wright
  7. Nevaldo Fleurs
  8. Rohan Janse van Rensburg