Airlink Pumas Set To Continue Their Dominance Over Fidelity ADT Lions In Mbombela


The defending champion Airlink Pumas, fresh from their stunning 63-15 away triumph over the Vodacom Bulls at Loftus Versfeld in the opening round, host the Fidelity ADT Lions on Friday, with kick-off scheduled for 17h00 in the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit.

The Airlink Pumas served a firm reminder of their intentions to hold onto their Currie Cup title when they outgunned the Vodacom Bulls in Pretoria and on Friday, they face the talented, but inexperienced Fidelity ADT Lions in the Mbombela Stadium.

Their current form, and the fact that they are an extremely tough side to beat in Mpumalanga, must therefore make Jimmy Stonehouse’s charges a firm favourite over the visitors from Johannesburg, who started the season with a defeat to DHL WP last weekend.

The Airlink Pumas have won four out of the last five meetings between the two sides, including both their fixtures played last season.

Airlink Pumas head coach, Jimmy Stonehouse made only two changes to his backline.

Lundi Msenge is promoted from the bench to replace Sebastion de Klerk on the wing while Tinus de Beer is replaced at flyhalf by Brandon Thompson in the other change in the backline.

Mzwakhe Nkosi, head coach of the Fidelity ADT Lions made five changes to his starting line-up.

At Loosehead prop Rhynardt Rijnsburger replaces Sti Sithole who drops to the bench while Ruben Schoeman is Darrien-Lane Landsberg's new lock partner. Jarrod Cairns replaces Sibusiso Sangwenis who drops to the bench. Cairns will form the loosie partnership with Ruan Delpot and captain Travis Gordon.

At the back, Rynhardt Jonker replaces Matt More at the outside centre while Andries Coetzee returns to fullback, replacing Tiaan Swanepoel who drops to the bench.


Airlink Pumas: 15. Devon Williams, 14. Lundi Msenge, 13. Diego Appollis, 12. Ali Mgijima, 11. Jade Stighling, 10. Brandon Thompson, 9. Giovan Snyman, 8. Kwanda Dimaza, 7. Francois Kleinhans, 6. Andre Fouché, 5. Shane Kirkwood (c), 4. Deon Slabbert, 3. Njabulo Gumede, 2. Eduan Swart, 1. Corne Fourie. Replacements: 16. Llewellyn Classen, 17. Ettiene Janeke, 18. Simon Raw, 19. Malembe Mpofu, 20. Ruwald van der Merwe, 21. Chriswill September, 22. Ethan Fisher, 23. Stefan Coetzee.

Fidelity ADT Lions: 15. Andries Coetzee, 14. Stean Pienaar, 13. Rynhardt Jonker, 12. Tyler Bocks, 11. Boldwin Hansen, 10. Vaughan Isaacs, 9. Morné van den Berg, 8. Travis Gordon (c), 7. Ruan Delport, 6. Jarrod Cairns, 5. Darrien-Lane Landsberg, 4. Ruben Schoeman, 3. Ruan Smith, 2. Jaco Visagie, 1. Rhynardt Rijnsburger. Replacements: 16. Morne Brandon, 17. Sithembiso Sithole, 18. Kabous Bezuidenhout, 19. Raynard Roets, 20. Ruhan Straeuli, 21. Sibusiso Sangweni, 22. Nico Steyn, 23. Tiaan Swanepoel.