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Damian de Allende will play his first Currie Cup match of the season when DHL Western Province face Boland Cavaliers, at DHL Newlands, on Friday.

The returning Springbok centre comes straight into the starting line-up in place of Huw Jones, who has been sidelined with a hamstring injury, in one of five changes to the team that beat Griquas in Kimberley last week.

De Allende will be partnered in midfield by Johnny Kotze, after Juan de Jongh returned to Springbok duty this week, whilst in a rotational switch out wide Scott van Breda gets an opportunity to start on the wing, with Werner Kok providing cover from the replacements bench.

In the forward pack hooker Mike Willemse returns to the starting XV in place of Bongi Mbonambi, who has also rejoined the national squad. He is joined in the front row by loosehead prop Alistair Vermaak, with JC Janse van Rensburg on the replacments bench.

Dobson said that with a place in the Currie Cup semifinals on the line, his team will look to embrace the occasion as they host their near neighbours at DHL Newlands.“We know that our play-off fate is in our own hands, so the players are really motivated to continue on the upward curve we have been on in the last few weeks.

“Boland will pose a number of different challenges, and they certainly will not lack for motivation themselves, so it should make for a great match to watch at DHL Newlands,” he said.

*Not for publication: Working media please note that Captain’s Run at DHL Newlands on Thursday will take place at 11h00 and not 13h00 as per media schedule.

DHL Western Province: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Scott van Breda, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Kobus van Dyk, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Chris van Zyl (captain), 4 Jan de Klerk, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Mike Willemse, 1 Alistair Vermaak.
Replacements: 16 Neil Rautenbach, 17 JC Janse van Rensburg, 18 JP Smith, 19 Dave Ribbans, 20 Jurie van Vuuren, 21 Jano Vermaak, 22 Werner Kok.

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