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The Lions squad for the 2013 Lions Challenge

January 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

The Golden Lions mixed youth and experience with the squad the assembled for the Lions Challenge, 18 of the players have some Super Rugby experience a number of youngsters who played u/19 rugby last year are also in the squad while a number of players were not included, either due to long term injury or due to Varsity Cup commitments.

Amongst the backs fullback Ruhan Nel, wing Harold Vorster and centre Jacques Nel joins the squad from last year’s u/19 team together with centre Stokkies Hanekom (ex-WP & Maties) and flyhalves Lionel Cronje (ex-FS, WP and Blue Bulls) and Marnitz Boshoff (ex-Blue Bulls & Griquas). The rest of the backs all did duty for the last last year with Deon van Rensburg and Dylan Des Fountain still struggling with injuries which will see them miss the start of the season.

The forwards also feature a number of new and young faces. Loosie Claude Tshibidi comes through from the u/19s and prop Jacques Kotze from the u/21s and are joined by loosie Warwick Tecklenberg (ex-Blue Bulls), locks Franco Mostert (ex-Blue Bulls), JJ Breet (ex-Blue Bulls), Hugo Kloppers (Maties) and Gavin Annandale (ex-Griffons), prop Jacques van Rooyen (TUT & Pretoria Police) and hooker Robbie Coetzee (ex-Blue Bulls & Tuks).

All in all, considering that the main purpose of the Lions Challenge is to get the Lions match ready for the Wooden Spoon Knockouts in July, the Lions put together an exciting squad of players to groom during the season.

One of the question marks around the squad must be the largely lily white look of the team with only Anthony Volmink and Claude Tshibidi providing colour to the canvas. The Lions lost a most of their senior “transformation” players during 2012, although the term “transformation” is an insult to players like Jantjies, Mapoe and Maku. Be that as it may, the Lions will be pressed to bring more players of colour through during the year.

Fullbacks: Andries Coetzee, Ruan Combrinck*, Ruhan Nel. (Combrinck’s out for about 3 weeks – new injury)
Wings: Deon Helberg, Deon van Rensburg*, Anthony Volmink, Harold Vorster.  (van Rensburg out injured till end Feb)
Centres: Alwyn Hollenbach, Dylan des Fountain*, Stokkies Hanekom, Jacques Nel. (Des Fountain currently injured)
Flyhalves: Lionel Cronjé, Marnitz Boshoff, Guy Cronjé.
Scrumhalves: Michael Bondesio, Ross Cronjé.
Loose forwards: Derick Minnie, Jaco Kriel, Warren Whiteley*, Willie Britz, Warwick Tecklenburg, Claude Tshibidi. (Whiteley at Blitzbokke till mid-Feb)
Locks: Hendrik Roodt, Franco Mostert, Hugo Kloppers, JJ Breet, Gavin Annandale
Props: JC Janse van Rensburg (k), CJ van der Linde*, Ruan Dreyer, Jacques Kotze, Jacques van Rooyen. (van der Linde currently injured)
Hookers: Martin Bezuidenhout, Francois (Swys) du Toit, Robbie Coetzee.

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