The Cheetahs’ technical department looks set to inject new blood in the rugby team that will compete in the Dubai leg of the HSBC World Sevens Series next week.
The Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens is the first leg of the World Series and will take place from December 3- 4 before proceeding to George South Africa a week later.
Young backliner Justin Coles (18) looks set to become the youngest player in the Cheetahs squad for the global event as he is a favourite among the 19 players in camp for the tournament.
In an interview with NewsDay recently Coles said it would be an honour for him to represent the country at the grand stage.
“I’m looking forward to making the squad to compete in the World Series. It would be a dream come true for me. The competition for places is very high as everyone wants to impress but I’ll just keep working hard and hopefully I’ll make the final squad,” said Coles.
The former St John’s College headboy’s burst onto the scene with a match-winning performance in the National Rugby League final last month.
Then a virtually unknown quantity in local circles, Coles touched down two match winning tries for District Dragons to help them lift the league title against Harare Sports Club on his debut.
Cheetahs manager Bruce Hobson said the new guns stood a chance of making the squad, which he said would be released today.
“The younger players have been gradually stepping up their game in competing for places which has increased our player-base. Njabulo Ndlovu and Graham Kaulback are both under 21 but they are now like regulars in the team and I’m sure it has encouraged the youngsters,’ said Hobson.
However, he is no new face in the Sevens’ circles after featuring regularly for the developmental side the Goshawks before graduating into the Cheetahs early this year. The England-based duo of Shingai Chiwanga and Jason Graham will also be fighting for recognition, although the former travelled with the team for the Hong Kong Sevens last year.
Coles looks set to be joined by speed merchant Tafadzwa “Marabha” Chitokwindo, who could be Old Hararians’ first player to feature in the Cheetahs squad.
Chitokwindo who had a decent season with Old Hararians and the developmental side the Goshawks is gifted with raw pace and an eye for the try line.
Of the 19 players in camp 12 players are set to make the trip to Dubai where the Cheetahs are in Pool B with world beaters New Zealand, Argentina and the United States.