Burden returns for Sharks & Beast equals record

The burly hooker left the Sharks in 2013 having started his career as a centre, played for the Cell C Sharks between 2006 and 2013 before beginning a five-year career in France, representing Toulon, Montpellier and Stade Français.

FILE: Stade Francais' South Africa hooker Craig Burden (L) vies with Oyonnox's players during the Top 14 rugby union match between Stade Francais Paris and Oyonnax on 19 November 2017 at the Jean Bouin stadium in Paris. Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN - Craig Burden is poised to make his return to Super Rugby action having been named on the bench for Saturday’s derby against the Bulls at in Durban.

The burly hooker left the Sharks in 2013 having started his career as a centre, played for the Cell C Sharks between 2006 and 2013 before beginning a five-year career in France, representing Toulon, Montpellier and Stade Français.

In other team news, head coach Robert du Preez has made just two changes to the starting line-up this week, Luke Stringer replacing Phepsi Buthelezi at flank and Lwazi Mvovo coming onto the wing in place of Sbu Nkosi.

There is also a first call-up for loose forward Philip van der Walt who returned from Japan with an injury but is now back to full fitness and will join Burden in making an impact off the bench.

Iconic prop, Beast Mtawarira stands on the cusp of making history as this week he equals retired Adriaan Strauss's record for being the most capped South African Super Rugby player.

After this match, the pair would have both featured in 156 appearances in the competition. Strauss represented the Cheetahs and the Bulls, but Mtawarira has accomplished this record for just one team, the Sharks since making his debut in 2007 and will break the record South African record in his next appearance after this Saturday.