Willemse starts at No 10 for WP

Business Day - - SPORTS DAY - Craig Ray

Damian Willemse will start at fly­half for Western Prov­ince when they meet the Blue Bulls at Lof­tus Vers­feld on Satur­day.

Willemse‚ 20‚ was the Storm­ers’ reg­u­lar start­ing fly­half this sea­son but has re­cently been mak­ing cameos at full­back for the Spring­boks. How­ever‚ WP coach John Dob­son has de­cided to de­ploy the tal­ented young­ster in his most fa­mil­iar po­si­tion for this match.

Prov­ince need only one point from the en­counter to se­cure over­all top spot on the Cur­rie Cup stand­ings.

Willemse is one of three re­turn­ing Spring­boks to the WP start­ing line-up fol­low­ing their 50-28 win over the Sharks two weeks ago.

No 8 Sikhum­buzo Not­she starts at the back of the scrum in place of Jaco Coet­zee while tight­head Wilco Louw takes over from Michael Kumbi­rai.

Cen­tre Ruhan Nel‚ who was with the Bok squad but did not play‚ will be at out­side cen­tre, as he was against the Sharks.

In the front row, Louw starts along­side hooker Scarra Ntubeni and prop Ali Ver­maak‚ with skip­per Chris van Zyl and JD Schick­er­ling the lock pair­ing.

Scrumhalf Her­schel Jan­tjies will form an all-new half­back pair­ing with Willemse‚ while Dan du Plessis makes his first start of the sea­son in mid­field along­side Nel.

The out­side back com­bi­na­tion of Dil­lyn Leyds at full­back and wings Sergeal Petersen and SP Marais re­mains un­changed.

Dob­son said his team are ex­pect­ing a typ­i­cally tough ex­am­i­na­tion at Lof­tus Vers­feld.

“The Blue Bulls will ob­vi­ously be highly mo­ti­vated for this match‚ which should pro­vide us with the sort of chal­lenge we need ahead of the play-offs.”

Damian Willemse

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