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A milestone for Banda as he reaches 50 games for the Kings

The 31-year-old hot-stepper has amassed his caps in both the PRO14 championship and Super Rugby making him one of the stalwarts of the Port Elizabeth-based side.

Picture: @SouthernKingsSA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Southern Kings fullback Masixole Banda will earn his 50th cap for the franchise when the side takes on the Cheetahs in their PRO14 Round 8 clash at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Saturday.

The 31-year-old has amassed his caps in both the PRO14 championship and Super Rugby, making him one of the stalwarts of the Port Elizabeth-based side.

The diminutive player, who has shown his versatility at both fullback and flyhalf, will run on in the No. 15 jersey this weekend in front of his hometown crowd.

“I’m really excited to have reached this milestone, it has not been easy reaching 50 games, which is not a feat that many players are able to reach. I’m proud of the road that I have travelled in my career to reach this stage," said Banda.

“It is extra special for me because it can be something that can motivate other kids who come from our townships as I do. I’m grateful for the opportunities I have received to reach this point.

“I hope that I can contribute towards the team’s cause and aim of leaving the field with a win on Saturday. The Southern Kings is a team that is close to my heart and I always give it my all for my teammates, the coaches and the fans. It will be no different when I play my 50th match.”

Scrumhalf, Stefan Ungerer, will lead the team as captain when they the Cheetahs.

He takes over the leadership role from Howard Mnisi who is nursing a biceps injury.

Flyhalf Bader Pretorius will earn his first starting berth for the season as JT Jackson shifts to inside centre, where he will partner with the experienced Sibusiso Sithole.

Kings: 15. Masixole Banda, 14. Yaw Penxe, 13. Sibusiso Sithole, 12. John-Thomas Jackson, 11. Erich Cronje, 10. Bader Pretorius, 9. Stefan Ungerer, 8. Elrigh Louw, 7. Thembelani Bholi, 6. Ruaan Lerm, 5. Aston Fortuin, 4. Jerry Sexton, 3. Rossouw de Klerk, 2. Jacques du Toit, 1. Schalk Ferreira.

Replacement: 16. Alandre van Rooyen, 17. Xandre Vos, 18. Ignatius Prinsloo, 19. Bobby de Wee, 20. Lusanda Badiyana, 21. Theo Maree, 22. Courtney Winnaar, 23. Andell Loubser.