Sharks

Glasgow Warriors’ Thomas Gordon is tackled by Thomas du Toit during the United Rugby Championship match between Glasgow Warriors and Cell C Sharks at Scotstoun Stadium on October 02, 2021, in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ross MacDonald/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Ospreys vs Sharks: Thomas du Toit named skipper

Springbok prop Thomas du Toit will lead the Sharks out in Wales when they take on the Ospreys in Round three of the United Rugby Championship.

Sharks

Glasgow Warriors’ Thomas Gordon is tackled by Thomas du Toit during the United Rugby Championship match between Glasgow Warriors and Cell C Sharks at Scotstoun Stadium on October 02, 2021, in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ross MacDonald/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Springbok prop Thomas du Toit will lead the Sharks out in Wales when they take on the Ospreys in Round three of the United Rugby Championship.

Tourists need to be clinical

With much of the talk surrounding the need for an adjustment to the challenges presented by the new competition, Sharks skills coach Phiwe Nomlomo admits that the focus this week has been all about the need to be accurate and clinical. The Sharks were made to rue any mistakes they made against the attacking Glasgow Warriors last weekend, but the Ospreys present a very different challenge.

Nomlomo said: “This tour is a matter of learning and learning fast and just understanding that we’re in a different environment here. When you make a mistake, you get punished so we need to stay on top of the ball and execute the way we know we can.

“Ospreys play close to the style of Wales, they are a massive kicking side that likes to maul. They’re very defence orientated and will try stifle your play and box you in your own 22 and make it as hard as possible for you to get out.

“Just last week, we were playing against internationals in almost every single position and look at our guys, many of them only 22 or 23, so we were up against a side that have done this before, they’ve travelled all around the world,” he explains.

“With 13 of our key players unavailable due to national duty or injury, we have a bit of catching up as far as caps go with a relatively young squad, but we are working hard and up for the challenge. We’re learning and we’re learning fast.”

Sharks head coach Sean Everitt has made a number of changes to this week’s side, bringing in Ntuthuko Mchunu for Khwezi Mona and Kerron van Vuuren for Fez Mbatha (injured) who has not recovered from a knock that he took against Glasgow. Du Toit is retained at tighthead prop and has also been handed the captaincy role in the absence of Phepsi Buthelezi, who plays off the bench this week.

Hyron Andrews and Ruben van Heerden make a return as the lock partnership, with Le Roux Roets getting a break, while James Venter comes in for Dylan Richardson with Henco Venter named at eighthman.

In the midfield, Marius Louw and Jeremy Ward will partner up in place of Murray Koster and Werner Kok while Marnus Potgieter replaces Yaw Penxe and Anthony Volmink will start at fullback in place of Curwin Bosch.

Potgieter, Volmink and Dan Jooste (on the bench) will be making their URC debuts in this match.

Sharks team vs Ospreys

1. Ntuthuko Mchunu

2. Kerron van Vuuren

3. Thomas du Toit (Capt)

4. Ruben van Heerden

5. Hyron Andrews

6. James Venter

7. Gerbrandt Grobler

8. Henco Venter

9. Ruan Pienaar

10. Boeta Chamberlain

11. Thaakir Abrahams

12. Marius Louw

13. Jeremy Ward

14. Marnus Potgieter

15. Anthony Volmink

Replacements

16. Dan Jooste

17. Khwezi Mona

18. Lourens Adriaanse

19. Le Roux Roets

20. Phepsi Buthelezi

21. Dylan Richardson

22. Sanele Nohamba

23. Werner Kok

READ: Springboks’ end of year tour fixtures CONFIRMED by World Rugby

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