| Pienaar to skipper Cheetahs in PRO14 opener

Cape Town – The 19th season of PRO14 begins at the Toyota Stadium in Bloemfontein on Friday when recently crowned Currie Cup champions, the Cheetahs, welcome last season’s beaten finalists and 2015 champions, Glasgow Warriors

Kick-off is at 19:05.

The two sides have met four times previously in the PRO14 with the visitors victorious on each occasion.

“We did well in the Currie Cup and enjoyed the moment, but the mentality among the players is that we still have to keep working hard. Glasgow Warriors are very task driven. We have to keep the momentum and we will be well prepared for this competition. We are not underestimating what is coming,” said interim coach Franco Smith.

“The good thing is that we start at home. Very tough opposition will be coming for us in the next three weeks and we have to be up for the challenge. I believe, and have all the confidence in the team, that we can bring home the victories and put up the log points. The attitude in the team is to stick together and keep working hard for the player next to you,” added club captain Tian Meyer.

The following players were not eligible for team selection due to injury: Justin Basson (knee), Ali Mgijima (Achilles), Marnus van der Merwe (foot), Charles Marais (bicep) and Clayton Blommetjies (ankle).

The following players were also ruled out due to international duty: Ruben de Haas (USA) and Aranos Coetzee (Namibia) – Rugby World Cup, Darren Adonis – SA Sevens.



15 Rhyno Smith, 14 William Small-Smith, 13 Benhard Janse van Rensburg, 12 Dries Swanepoel, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Ruan Pienaar (captain), 8 Henco Venter, 7 Junior Pokomela, 6 Gerhard Olivier, 5 Walt Steenkamp, 4 Sintu Manjezi, 3 Erich de Jager, 2 Joseph Dweba, 1 Ox Nche

Substitutes: 16 Reinach Venter, 17 Boan Venter, 18 Luan de Bruin, 19 JP du Preez, 20 Sias Koen, 21 Jasper Wiese, 22 Tian Meyer, 23 Louis Fouche

Glasgow Warriors

15 Glenn Bryce, 14 Kyle Steyn, 13 Nick Grigg, 12 Huw Jones, 11 Rory Hughes, 10 Brandon Thomson, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Matt Fagerson, 7 Callum Gibbins (captain), 6 Rob Harley, 5 Tim Swinson, 4 Andrew Davidson, 3 D’arcy Rae, 2 Grant Stewart, Oli Kebble

Substitutes: 16 Johnny Matthews, 17 Alex Allan, 18 Adam Nicol, 19 Bruce Flockhart, 20. Chris Fusaro, 21 Jamie Dobie, 22 Ruaridh Jackson, 23. Robbie Nairn

PRO14 Week 1 fixtures:

Friday, September 27

Cheetahs v Glasgow Warriors – 19:05

Ulster v Ospreys – 20:35

Saturday, September 28

Kings v Cardiff Blues – 16:00

Munster v Dragons – 16:00

Llanelli Scarlets v Connacht – 18:15

Benetton Rugby v Leinster – 18:15

Edinburgh v Zebre – 20:35

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