United Rugby Championship Team Announcements Round 10

United Rugby Championship Team Announcements Round 10


  • Cell C Sharks Thomas du Toit shifts over to the loosehead side
  • Reinhard Nothnagel returns to Emirates Lions starting XV


  • BJ Dixon makes his first start of the season at lock for DHL Stormers
  • Scrum-half, Embrose Papier starts for Vodacom Bulls with Zak Burger primed to get a run if called from the bench


  • Cameron Neild is set for BKT URC debut for Glasgow Warriors if called upon from the bench
  • Edinburgh Rugby centurion Chris Dean starts at centre


  • Shane Delahunt, Oisín Dowling and Bundee Aki the only players to retain their place in Connacht’s starting XV
  • John Cooney, who was awarded The Difference Maker award in the inaugural URC Unity Awards, is named at scrum half



Cell C Sharks v Emirates Lions

Hollywoodbets Kings Park, Durban – KO 15.00 IRE & UK / 16.00 ITA / 17.00 SA

Referee: Aimee Barrett-Theron (SARU, 3rd league game)

AR 1: Stephan Geldenhuys (SARU) AR 2: Paul Mente (SARU)

TMO: Marius van der Westhuisen (SARU)

Live on: SuperSport, Viaplay, Premier Sports, Discovery + & URC.tv

Cell C Sharks: Boeta Chamberlain, Werner Kok, Lukhanyo Am, Rohan Janse van Rensburg, Makazole Mapimpi, Curwin Bosch, Grant Williams, Thomas du Toit, Dan Jooste, Carlu Sadie, Vincent Tshituka, Hyron Andrews, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Jeandre Labuschagne, Phepsi Buthelezi (CAPT)

Replacements: Kerron van Vuuren, Dian Bleuler, Hanro Jacobs, Gerbrandt Grobler, Siya Kolisi, Jaden Hendrikse, Lionel Cronje, Ben Tapuai

Emirates Lions: Andries Coetzee, Edwill van der Merwe, Rynhardt Jonker, Marius Louw, Quan Horn, Jordan Hendrikse, Sanele Nohamba, JP Smith, PJ Botha, Asenathi Ntlabakanye, Willem Alberts, Reinhard Nothnagel (CAPT), Emmanuel Tshituka, Darrien Landsberg, Ruan Venter

Replacements: Jaco Visagie, Sti Sithole, Ruan Smith, Pieter Jansen van Vuren, Jaco Kriel, Andre Warner, Gianni Lombard, Stean Pienaar

Emirates Lions Forwards & Line Out Coach Albert van der Berg said“Friday will be a good opportunity for us to show what we prepared for all week. We know what they are going to bring; they have a good overall kicking game, an exciting backline and a decent pack of forwards.  It will be important for us to start well, stay in the fight as long as possible and hopefully get the win. We don’t want to dwell too much on the unbeaten run. The feeling is that we can improve on certain aspects of our game from both an individual and team perspective. It’s going to be a tough for us against a well-coached Sharks side and while we take the confidence of not having lost in recent weeks, we won’t take this occasion for granted.”

DHL Stormers v Vodacom Bulls

DHL Stadium, Cape Town – KO 17.15 IRE & UK / 18.15 ITA / 19.15 SA

Referee: AJ Jacobs (SARU, 14th league game)

AR 1: Cwengile Jadezweni (SARU) AR 2: Griffin Colby (SARU)

TMO: Marius Jonker (SARU)

Live on: SuperSport, Viaplay, Premier Sports, Discovery + & URC.tv

DHL Stormers: Damian Willemse, Angelo Davids, Suleiman Hartzenberg, Dan du Plessis, Leolin Zas, Manie Libbok, Paul de Wet, Steven Kitshoff (CAPT), Joseph Dweba, Frans Malherbe, Ben-Jason Dixon, Marvin Orie, Deon Fourie, Willie Engelbrecht, Hacjivah Dayimani

Replacements: JJ Kotze, Ali Vermaak, Neethling Fouche, Connor Evans, Junior Pokomela, Marcel Theunissen, Godlen Masimla, Clayton Blommetjies

Vodacom Bulls: Kurt-Lee Arendse, Cornal Hendricks, Lionel Mapoe, Harold Vorster, Canan Moodie, Johan Goosen, Embrose Papier, Gerhard Steenekamp, Johan Grobbelaar, Mornay Smith, Ruan Vermaak, Ruan Nortje (CAPT), Marco Van Staden, Cyle Brink, Elrigh Louw

Replacements: Bismarck Du Plessis, Simphiwe Matanzima, Sebastian Lombard, Janko Swanepoel, Nizaam Carr, Zak Burger, Chris Smit, Stravino Jacobs

DHL Stormers Head Coach John Dobson said"These 'festive derbies' are going to become part of our rugby tradition going forward so this is an exciting new chapter in the rivalry between the two teams. We have had some injury disruptions this week, but have managed to build some good depth this season and you can be sure that every player in our matchday squad will be ready to give it everything. This is a big match for both sets of fans and we are looking forward to what should be a fantastic atmosphere at DHL Stadium on Friday."

Glasgow Warriors v Edinburgh Rugby

Scotstoun Stadium, Glasgow – KO 19.35 IRE & UK / 20.35 ITA / 21.35 SA

Referee: Ben Blain (SRU, 28th league game)

AR 1: Hollie Davidson (SRU)  AR 2: Sam Grove-White (SRU)

TMO: Mike Adamson (SRU)

Live on: Viaplay, Premier Sports, SuperSport, Discovery + & URC.tv

Glasgow Warriors: Josh McKay, Sebastian Cancelliere, Sione Tuipulotu, Stafford McDowall, Kyle Steyn (CAPT), Tom Jordan, George Horne, Jamie Bhatti, Fraser Brown, Murphy Walker, Sintu Manjezi, Richie Gray, Matt Fagerson, Sione Vailanu, Jack Dempsey

Replacements: George Turner, Nathan McBeth, Simon Berghan, JP du Preez, Lewis Bean, Cameron Neild, Ali Price, Domingo Miotti

Edinburgh Rugby: Emiliano Boffelli, Wes Goosen, James Lang, Chris Dean, Duhan van der Merwe, Charlie Savala, Ben Vellacott, Pierre Schoeman, Tom Cruse, WP Nel, Glen Young, Grant Gilchrist (CO-CAPT) Jamie Ritchie (CO-CAPT), Connor Boyle, Viliame Mata

Replacements: Patrick Harrison, Boan Venter, Angus Williams, Marshall Sykes, Ben Muncaster, Henry Pyrgos, Jaco van der Walt, Cammy Scott

Edinburgh Rugby Head Coach Mike Blair said: “For the players, it’s absolutely brilliant to be involved in such a historic fixture for both clubs. This is a derby that has stood the test of time and we’re proud to celebrate 150 years of rugby rivalry in a match-up that is a cornerstone of Scottish rugby history. There has been a brilliant buzz around training this week, which you’d expect in the build-up to a derby, and I’ve been really impressed with the squad’s attitude and work rate after a strong win against Castres last weekend. Derbies are brilliant games to be part of and we’re hugely excited to represent the capital city at Scotstoun tomorrow night.”

Connacht v Ulster

The Sportsground, Galway – KO 19.35 IRE & UK / 20.35 ITA / 21.35 SA

Referee: Frank Murphy (IRFU, 71st league game)

AR 1: Eoghan Cross (IRFU) AR 2: Andrew Cole (IRFU)

TMO: Olly Hodges (IRFU)

Live on: RTÉ, Viaplay, Premier Sports, SuperSport, Discovery + & URC.tv        

Connacht: Tiernan O’Halloran, John Porch, Tom Farrell, Bundee Aki, Mack Hansen, Jack Carty (CAPT), Caolin Blade, Denis Buckley, Shane Delahunt, Finlay Bealham, Josh Murphy, Niall Murray, Oisín Dowling, Conor Oliver, Cian Prendergast

Replacements: Dave Heffernan, Peter Dooley, Dominic Robertson-McCoy, Shamus Hurley-Langton, Jarrad Butler, Kieran Marmion, David Hawkshaw, Adam Byrne

Ulster: Mike Lowry, Ethan McIlroy, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey, Rob Lyttle, Nathan Doak, John Cooney, Rory Sutherland, Tom Stewart, Marty Moore, Alan O'Connor, Iain Henderson (CAPT), David McCann, Marcus Rea, Nick Timoney

Replacements: John Andrew, Eric O'Sullivan, Gareth Milasinovich, Sam Carter, Greg Jones, Dave Shanahan, Jake Flannery, Stewart Moore

Connacht Director Of Rugby Andy Friend said“We all realise the importance of tomorrow’s game in our aims for a top 8 finish this season.  We’ve a number of players returning to us after a break, and have also included a few players in the 23 who impressed in the Challenge Cup, so there’s a good mix in our matchday squad. Games against Ulster are always hugely intense, so the winners will be the ones who front up for the full 80 minutes. With a large crowd behind us and everyone in the Christmas spirit it’s sure to be a great occasion”.

Ulster Assistant Coach Dan Soper said“This game was always going to be a big challenge. Connacht have found a rich vein of form of late, and it will be our first time at The Sportsground on the new surface. We don’t have any option other than to face up to it. It’s an Interpro, and we’ve had some really tough battles against Connacht. I expect this week to be exactly the same.”

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