Vodacom Blue Bulls Under-19 coach Paul Anthony on Wednesday announced a side with seven changes to play the Toyota Free State Under-19 team in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
With second place on the log of the Absa Under-19 Provincial Championship secured and only a remote chance of moving into first, Anthony tweaked his match 22 from last weekend’s match against the KZN Sharks, with injuries influencing his decisions as well.
Hard-running No 8 Paul Janse van Rensburg injured knee ligaments and will be out for the remainder of the season, while Ruan Steenkamp, who has been picked to lead the side from that position, will only play pending a fitness test later in the week. He has a hip flexor injury. If declared unfit, Clyde Davids will start at No 8.
Anthony also recalled the likes of Vian Riekert (wing), Francois Tredoux (flyhalf) and Roelof Smit (flank), who all recovered from niggles, whilst Philip du Preez will earn a first start in the season after finally recovering from an operation.
Andrew Beerwinkel will start at prop and will be the only player in the squad to have played in all 12 matches of the regular season.
The Blue Bulls are on 42 points and in second place on the log. They can still overhaul DHL Western Province (45 points), but the Cape side also has a game left, playing the winless and last placed SWD Eagles in George.
The team to play the Cheetahs at 13h00 at Shimla Park in Bloemfontein is: Jacques Rossouw, Kefentse Mahlo, Dean Moolman, Burger Odendaal (v/c), Vian Riekert, Francois Tredoux, Carlo Engelbrecht, Ruan Steenkamp ©/Clyde Davids, Christiaan de Bruin, Roelof Smit, Dennis Visser, Philip du Preez, Andrew Beerwinkel, Hamish Herd, Jan Enslin. REPLACEMENTS: Jacques Taylor, Justin Forwood, Irnè Herbst, Nicolaas Immelman, Clyde Davids/Jannes Kirsten, Wandi Sompontsha, Dalton Kannemeyer, Theodore Ferreira.