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  • Super Rugby
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  • 28th Apr 2012
  • KO 16:05

Cheetahs v Highlanders: Teams

At Free State Stadium, Saturday April 28, kick-off 4:05pm

Last updated: 27th April 2012   Subscribe to RSS Feed

Ben Smith looking to fend for Highlanders

Ben Smith: Recovered from concussion in time to play

Adriaan Strauss Cheetahs captain 2011

Adriaan Strauss: Will lead Cheetahs into battle with Highlanders

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Cheetahs captain and hooker Adriaan Strauss returns to the starting XV for Saturday's clash with the Highlanders in Bloemfontein.

Strauss was a late withdrawal through illness ahead of their match with the Chiefs a fortnight ago, but has now fully recovered following the Cheetahs' bye last weekend.

Coach Naka Drotske has made three other changes to his run-on side, all in the back-line.

Cameron Jacobs comes in for the injured Rayno Benjamin on the right wing, while fly-half Johan Goosen and scrum-half Tewis de Bruyn are preferred to Sias Ebersohn and Piet van Zyl respectively as the starting half-backs.


Drotske has also preferred to start Justin Downey on the flank, which means Springbok loose forward Ashley Johnson continues on the bench after he made a telling contribution as an impact player in the loss to the Chiefs.

Ben Smith has recovered from concussion in time to be named at full-back for the Highlanders.

Smith missed his side's 30-27 victory over the Blues in Dunedin, but returns for the team's first tour match in South Africa as the only change to their run-on XV.

The former All Black replaces Tamati Ellison at 15, with Ellison shifting back to outside centre in place of Phil Burleigh who drops out of the matchday 22.

Siale Piutau makes a welcome return from an ankle injury to take a place on the bench.

The Highlanders have won all six previous games against the Cheetahs.

Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Cameron Jacobs, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Andries Strauss, 11 Willie le Roux, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Tewis de Bruyn, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Justin Downey, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Izak van der Westhuizen, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss (c), 1 Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 George Earle, 19 Ashley Johnson, 20 Piet van Zyl, 21 Sias Ebersohn, 22 Philip Snyman.

Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Buxton Popoali'i, 13 Tamati Ellison, 12 Shaun Treeby, 11 Hosea Gear, 10 Mike Delany, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu, 7 James Haskell, 6 Adam Thomson, 5 Jarrad Hoeata, 4 Josh Bekhuis, 3 Chris King, 2 Andrew Hore, 1 Jamie Mackintosh (c).
Replacements: 16 Jason Rutledge, 17 Ma'afu Fia, 18 Culum Retallick, 19 Doug Tietjens, 20 Jimmy Cowan, 21 Chris Noakes, 22 Siale Piutau.

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Friday 6th March
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06:35Chiefs vs Highlanders
08:40Brumbies vs Western Force
Saturday 7th March
06:35Blues vs Lions
08:40Reds vs Waratahs
15:05Cheetahs vs Bulls
17:10Stormers vs Sharks
Friday 13th March
06:35Hurricanes vs Blues
11:00Western Force vs Melbourne Rebels
Saturday 14th March
03:30Crusaders vs Lions
06:35Highlanders vs Waratahs
08:40Reds vs Brumbies
13:00Stormers vs Chiefs
15:05Cheetahs vs Sharks
Friday 20th March
06:35Highlanders vs Hurricanes
08:40Melbourne Rebels vs Lions
Saturday 21st March
06:35Crusaders vs Cheetahs
15:05Bulls vs Western Force
17:10Sharks vs Chiefs
Sunday 22nd March
05:05Waratahs vs Brumbies
Friday 27th March
06:35Hurricanes vs Melbourne Rebels
09:00Reds vs Lions
Saturday 28th March
05:30Chiefs vs Cheetahs
06:35Highlanders vs Stormers
08:40Waratahs vs Blues
15:05Sharks vs Western Force

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Phil Edwards

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