The Lions are hoping to take their first Currie Cup win of the season on Saturday as they welcome the Sharks to Ellis Park for what is expected to be a great meeting (kick-off 5pm).
The Lions have lost their first two games to Western Province and the Pumas and are desperate to get themselves on the board.
However, they face an in shape and stoked Sharks team that has won their two games against the Griquas and the Western Province and will be pursuing their third win in a row.
However, the fledgling Lions squad has been given a boost with a few reinforcements from the URC squad, including exciting up-and-coming loose striker Vincent Tshituka who continues to make his return from injury after playing against the Stormers last week.
“Vince hasn’t been dropped, he’s been out for a month and the URC coaching group felt he was a little short on playing time and inaccurate, so clearly it’s an opportunity for him to get some playing time before they go on their tour next week ”, explains Lions coach Mziwakhe Nkosi.
“Our team is all the better for it, he is an excellent loose forward and one of the best in the country, so it kills two birds with one stone. He gets some playing time and we get some quality in our line-up.”
Lions captain Asenathi Ntlabakanye is also looking forward to the game and believes his side is in good space and ready for the challenge of the Sharks.
“I’m very happy with where the team is at the moment, as I said after the game against the Pumas, we really had to fight in the areas that we indicated,” said Ntlabakanye.
“I think it’s been four very good weeks for us, both outside and on the pitch, we needed some time to recover and rest and we’re really looking forward to Saturday’s game.”
The other Currie Cup game on Saturday will see the in-form Cheetahs face the Pumas in Mbombela (kick-off 2.30pm).
Arguably the favorites for this season’s Currie Cup, the Cheetahs go into the game with an opening win against the Griquas and then an impressive away win of bonus points against the Bulls and will be happy to continue their good start.
“We have made a lot of preparations in the past two weeks. We know we are playing against a very good team in Nelspruit and it has been a difficult place to go over the past few seasons. They have suffered a big loss against the Griquas, so they will be ready,” said captain Ruan Pienaar.
The Pumas will try to bounce back from their disappointing loss to the Griquas last time and hope the home advantage will give them a lead.