Duhan van der Merwe picked by British and Irish Lions for Sharks re-match

Hat-trick hero Duhan van der Merwe has been given another chance to demonstrate his Test team credentials after being named in the British and Irish Lions team to play Sharks on Saturday.

Duhan van der Merwe scored a hat-trick of tries for the Lions against the Cell C Sharks in Johannesburg. Picture: David Rogers/Getty Images
Duhan van der Merwe scored a hat-trick of tries for the Lions against the Cell C Sharks in Johannesburg. Picture: David Rogers/Getty Images

The Scotland wing bagged three tries against the same opponents in Johannesburg on Wednesday as the tourists won 54-7.

The sides will meet again this weekend in Pretoria after the Lions’ original opponents, the Bulls, withdrew due to a Covid outbreak in their squad.

Hide Ad

Van der Merwe is one of four Scotland internationals in the starting XV for the match at Loftus Versfeld, centre Chris Harris, prop Rory Sutherland and flanker Hamish Watson being the others.

Hide Ad

Finn Russell, the Scotland stand-off, is named among the replacements, one of only two backs on the bench. The other is tour captain and scrum-half Conor Murray.

Jamie George of Saracens will captain the side against Sharks and there are 13 changes to the team in total with only Elliot Daly and van der Merwe retained.

Hide Ad

The Lions were hit by two Covid positive cases earlier this week but earlier on Friday the tour PCR screening programme returned a negative set of results.

A statement from the Lions said: “On Wednesday 7 July, one member of staff tested positive for COVID-19. As a result, the individual and four close contacts (one player and three members of staff) are being isolated at the team hotel.”

Hide Ad
Read More
Georgia v Scotland: Test match cancelled due to Covid-19

Warren Gatland, the Lions head coach, said: “It’s obviously been a slightly turbulent week, but we remain determined to keep rolling with the punches.

Hide Ad

“In many ways, the challenges we’ve faced this week have strengthened our resolve to do everything we can to overcome the challenges created by Covid.

“The feeling in the camp on Wednesday night was just to give it a crack – I was really proud by how everyone reacted, particularly the match day squad who would have never prepared for a game like that before.”

Hide Ad

British and Irish Lions (v Sharks, Saturday, Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria, 5pm BST)

15. Liam Williams (Scarlets, Wales)

Hide Ad

14. Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby, England)

13. Elliot Daly (Saracens, England)

Hide Ad

12. Chris Harris (Gloucester Rugby, Scotland)

11. Duhan van der Merwe (Worcester Warriors, Scotland)

Hide Ad

10. Dan Biggar (Northampton Saints, Wales)

9. Gareth Davies (Scarlets, Wales)

Hide Ad

1. Rory Sutherland (Worcester Warriors, Scotland)

2. Jamie George – captain (Saracens, England)

Hide Ad

3. Tadhg Furlong (Leinster Rugby, Ireland)

4. Maro Itoje (Saracens, England)

Hide Ad

5. Jonny Hill (Exeter Chiefs, England)

6. Tadhg Beirne (Munster Rugby, Ireland)

Hide Ad

7. Hamish Watson (Edinburgh Rugby, Scotland)

8. Jack Conan (Leinster Rugby, Ireland)

Hide Ad

Replacements:

16. Ken Owens (Scarlets, Wales)

Hide Ad

17. Wyn Jones (Scarlets, Wales)

18. Kyle Sinckler (Bristol Bears, England)

Hide Ad

19. Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints, England)

20. Sam Simmonds (Exeter Chiefs, England)

Hide Ad

21. Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, England)

22. Conor Murray (Munster Rugby, Ireland)

Hide Ad

23. Finn Russell (Racing 92, Scotland)

A message from the Editor:

Hide Ad

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription