The Ikey Tigers will look to secure their first home-game win of the season on Monday when they come up against Shimlas on the Green Mile.
Several changes have been made to the side ahead of the sixth round clash, both rotations and relatively new squad inclusions.
New Zealander Guy Shwikard makes his return to the side at left centre, having last played in the second round game UCT won against Maties. Back from injury, Joel Carew also excitingly returns to the team.
Captain Liam Slatem is back in the starting line-up after last week’s rotation, with James Alexander starting from the bench this week. Another rotation comes in the form of hooker Neil Rautenbach who will start this match, and Chad Solomon who is on the bench.
Tigers coach Kevin Musikanth explains the swap saying ‘’it is important to give key positions like hooker and scrum halves game time as equally as possibly, as both have been really good so far with different skill sets and team contributions.’’
Musikanth also explains the role Shaun McDonald will play next week, saying: ‘’Jan Uys has been drafted into the Western Province Vodacom side so Shaun moves from blindside flank into the lock position.’’
New squad inclusions for Monday’s game come in the form of eighthman Michael Botha and utility back Nathan Nel. Botha is a former UCT captain, who led the side to intervarsity victory. Nel, on the other hand, is a former Western Province U21 player from Bishops boy who played in the Varsity Cup before he was injured last year.
Speaking about the upcoming game, right wing Richard Stewart said, ‘’we are positive moving into the Shimlas home game. They are a good side who also like to run to ball a lot but we are focused on the task at hand and look forward to a good game back home on the Green Mile.’’
Similarly, focusing on the opportunity to claim back their home-ground, Musikanth explained ‘’we are hoping to tick a good home game box this Monday. We have unfortunately played against the two teams that were on top of the log and they managed to beat us on the Mile.
We let ourelves down against Pukke in the first match and were highly competitive against Tuks in the last home game, but we are hoping to go one better against Shimlas who will be very tough, but we will definitely give 100 percent on the park.’’
The game kicks off at 17:00, and will not be televised, so make sure you turn out to back your boytjies. Tickets for the game can be found at www.webtickets.co.za.
FNB UCT: 15 Ross Jones Davies, 14 Richard Stewart, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Guy Shwikard, 11 Lihleli Xoli, 10 Dean Grant, 9 Liam Slatem (c), 8 Michael Botha, 7 Vince Jobo, 6 Jason Klaasen, 5 James Kilroe, 4 Shaun McDonald, 3 Digby Webb, 2 Neil Rautenbach, 1 Joel Carew.
Replacements: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Robin Murray, 18 Guy Alexander, 19 Kyle Kriel, 20 James Alexander, 21 Martin Sauls, 22 Nathan Nel, 23 David Maasch.