The United Rugby Championship continues on Friday as two matches take place, with the Sharks and Edinburgh hosting the Ospreys and Munster in their respective fixtures.
Sharks v Ospreys
The Sharks have called on several Springboks stars, excluding Eben Etzebeth and Siya Kolisi, as the Durban outfit look to get their season back on track following the departure of coach Sean Everitt this week.
Bongi Mbonambi and Ox Nche come into the front-row alongside the powerful Carlu Sadie.
There is a positional change for Vincent Tshituka, who moves from flank to lock alongside Gerbrandt Grobler with Sikhumbuzo Notshe on the side of the scrum alongside Jeandre Labuschange and skipper Phepsi Buthelezi in the back-row.
Jaden Hendrikse starts with Curwin Bosch as the half-back pairing, whilst Boeta Chamberlain wears 15 this weekend.
Makazole Mapimpi is on the left wing with Marnus Potgieter on the right while Ben Tapuai and Francois Venter are the midfield for Neil Powell’s first game in charge of the Sharks.
Meanwhile, Rhys Webb will captain the Ospreys with back-row Will Hickey set to make his second start in succession for the Welsh region.
Hickey made 15 tackles last week against the Bulls without missing one and is alongside Ethan Roots and Morgan Morris in the back-row.
Keelan Giles lines up on the left wing and is one of just four players in the URC to have made eight or more line breaks so far this season.
Webb is joined by Jack Walsh in the half-backs while Giles links up with Luke Morgan and Max Nagy in the back three for this fixture.
Sharks: 15 Boeta Chamberlain, 14 Marnus Potgieter, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Ben Tapuai, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Jaden Hendrikse, 8 Phepsi Buthelezi (c), 7 Jeandre Labuschagne, 6 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 5 Gerbrandt Grobler, 4 Vincent Tshituka, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Ox Nche
Replacements: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 Khutha Mchunu, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 James Venter, 21 Grant Williams, 22 Nevaldo Fleurs, 23 Rohan Janse van Rensburg
Ospreys: 15 Max Nagy, 14 Luke Morgan, 13 Michael Collins, 12 Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler, 11 Keelan Giles, 10 Jack Walsh, 9 Rhys Webb (c), 8 Morgan Morris, 7 Will Hickey, 6 Ethan Roots, 5 Huw Sutton, 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Tom Botha, 2 Sam Parry, 1 Rhys Henry
Replacements: 16 Scott Baldwin, 17 Garyn Phillips, 18 Ben Warren, 19 Jack Regan, 20 Harri Deaves, 21 Reuben Morgan-Williams, 22 Luke Scully, 23 Cai Evans
Venue: Hollywoodbets Kings Park
Kick-off: 19:10 local (17:10 GMT)
Referee: Eoghan Cross (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Stephan Geldenhuys (South Africa), Griffin Colby (South Africa)
TMO: Sam Grove-White (Scotland)
Edinburgh v Munster
Edinburgh welcome the return of several experienced internationalists for their crucial United Rugby Championship match against Munster at DAM Health Stadium.
The club’s biggest crowd of season awaits the return of Pierre Schoeman (loosehead), Grant Gilchrist (lock), Jamie Ritchie (back-row), Viliame Mata (number eight), Blair Kinghorn (fly-half), Mark Bennett (outside centre), Duhan van der Merwe and Darcy Graham (both wing) all return to reinforce Edinburgh’s starting XV.
The capital side make four further changes to the side that faced Benetton in Round Eight as academy hooker Paddy Harrison Luan de Bruin (tighthead), Ben Vellacott (scrum-half) and Chris Dean (centre) all get the nod for the Friday night clash.
Wes Goosen moves to full-back – with Henry Immelman missing out through injury – while there is a place on the bench for recently signed hooker, Tom Cruse, who is in line to make his Edinburgh debut.
The capital club has called on its fans to help pay tribute to the great Doddie Weir OBE, who last weekend tragically lost his battle with MND, with supporters encouraged to wear tartan garments to bring colour to the match, where a moment’s applause will be held in his memory before kick-off.
An electric back-three unit sees full-back Goosen and Scotland wing duo Graham and Van der Merwe combine for the first time.
Bennett and club centurion Dean link up in midfield while Vellacott and Kinghorn return at half-back.
Hooker Harrison packs down alongside props Schoeman and De Bruin as Jamie Hodgson and club co-captain Gilchrist complete the tight-five.
Luke Crosbie retains his place at openside flanker with Scotland skipper Ritchie and Fijian star Mata both returning to the capital back-row.
Meanwhile, John Ryan starts on his 200th Munster appearance as he becomes the 13th player to reach the landmark, joining team-mates Stephen Archer and Dave Kilcoyne in the 200 club.
There are five personnel changes and one positional switch to the side that secured a bonus-point win against Connacht last time out.
In the backline, Shane Daly moves to full-back and Simon Zebo comes into the side on the wing.
There are four changes in the pack as Jeremy Loughman, Niall Scannell and Ryan come in to the front row with Gavin Coombes starting at number eight.
Full-back Daly, Calvin Nash and Zebo make up the back three.
Rory Scannell and Antoine Frisch continue their centre partnership with half-backs Craig Casey and Joey Carbery also unchanged.
Loughman, Scannell and Ryan start in the front row with Jean Kleyn and Tadhg Beirne keeping their places in the engine room.
Captain Peter O’Mahony and John Hodnett are joined by Coombes in the back-row.
Greencore Munster Rugby Academy back three player Patrick Campbell is included among the replacements and set to make his sixth appearance of the season.
Edinburgh: 15 Wes Goosen, 14 Darcy Graham, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Chris Dean, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Blair Kinghorn, 9 Ben Vellacott, 8 Villame Mata, 7 Luke Crosbie, 6 Jamie Ritchie (cc), 5 Grant Gilchrist (cc), 4 Jamie Hodgson, 3 Luan de Bruin, 2 Patrick Harrison, 1 Pierre Schoeman
Replacements: 16 Tom Cruse, 17 Boan Venter, 18 WP Nel, 19 Marshall Sykes, 20 Nick Haining, 21 Charlie Shiel, 22 Jaco van der Walt, 23 James Lang
Munster: 15 Shane Daly, 14 Calvin Nash, 13 Antoine Frisch, 12 Rory Scannell, 11 Simon Zebo, 10 Joey Carbery, 9 Craig Casey, 8 Gavin Coombes, 7 John Hodnett, 6 Peter O’Mahony (c), 5 Tadhg Beirne, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 John Ryan, 2 Niall Scannell, 1 Jeremy Loughman
Replacements: 16 Diarmuid Barron, 17 Josh Wycherley, 18 Roman Salanoa, 19 Jack O’Donoghue, 20 Alex Kendellen, 21 Paddy Patterson, 22 Jack Crowley, 23 Patrick Campbell
Venue: DAM Health Stadium
Kick-off: 19:35 GMT
Referee: Mathieu Raynal (France)
Assistant referees: Ian Kenny (Scotland), Ross Mabon (Scotland)
TMO: Philippe Bonhoure (France)
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The article United Rugby Championship: 200 up for Munster’s John Ryan against Edinburgh as the Sharks call on Springboks for Ospreys clash appeared first on Planetrugby.com.