DURBAN, South Africa, July 24 (Reuters) - Pat Lambie has been restored to flyhalf and fellow international Willem Alberts has been shifted to lock as the Sharks made three changes to their starting line-up for Saturday’s Super Rugby semi-final against the Canterbury Crusaders in Christchurch.
Lambie, who made his first appearance in four months as a replacement in last weekend’s win over the Otago Highlanders, is restored to flyhalf with Frans Steyn moved to inside centre alongside Paul Jordaan, the team said on Thursday.
Springbok JP Pietersen, who was outside centre last week, is named on the wing in place of Sibusiso Sithole, who drops to the bench.
Alberts shifts to lock to replace the injured Anton Bresler, with Jean Deysel taking Alberts’ place on the flank. Stephan Lewies is back at lock after injury in place of Etienne Oosthuizen.
It will be Lambie’s first start since March when he tore his bicep. With Deysel having been elevated into the starting line-up, Tera Mtembu comes on to the bench.
Injury keeps talismanic prop Tendai Mtawira out but his teenage replacement Thomas du Toit received high praise after last weekend’s playoff win.
Sharks team: 15-SP Marais, 14-JP Pietersen, 13-Paul Jordaan, 12-Frans Steyn, 11-Lwazi Mvovo, 10-Pat Lambie, 9-Cobus Reinach, 8-Ryan Kankowski, 7-Jean Deysel, 6-Marcell Coetzee, 5-Stephan Lewies, 4-Willem Alberts, 3-Jannie du Plessis, 2-Bismarck du Plessis (captain), 1-Thomas du Toit
Replacements: 16-Kyle Cooper, 17-Dale Chadwick, 18-Lourens Adriaanse, 19-Etienne Oosthuizen, 20-Tera Mtembu, 21-Charl McLeod, 22- Sibusiso Sithole, 23-Tonderai Chavhanga (Reporting by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Ed Osmond)