Johannesburg - Lions coach Johan Ackermann has announced his side to take on the Sharks in a pre-season friendly at Ellis Park on Friday evening (19:00 kick-off).
Ackermann has made wholesale changes to his team that beat the Kings 19-12 in Port Elizabeth at the weekend.
He believes that the match will be the ideal opportunity to mix youth and experience, and will act as a learning curve for those that have not yet come into contact with a side as experienced as the Sharks.
“Of course it is important for us to avoid further injuries so we have decided to rest some of our players,” Ackermann told the Lions' official website
“However, I also believe Friday’s game will give some of our young players an opportunity to express themselves and gain some valuable experience. It will be a chance for them to put their hands up for the future.”
In the forwards, Jacques van Rooyen (prop), Warwick Tecklenburg (flank) and Willie Britz (No 8) move up from the bench into the starting XV. Bees Roux
(prop), Lourens Erasmus, Martin Muller (both locks) and Ruaan Lerm (flank) have also been drafted in after solid performances during their Vodacom Cup warm-up game against the Blue Bulls in Polokwane, last Saturday.
Meanwhile, in the backline, Willie du Plessis moves into the starting line-up at flyhalf as Faf de Klerk comes in at scrumhalf. Alwyn Hollenbach and Stokkies Hanekom have been brought in in the midfield, while Deon van Rensburg will start at right wing. Coenie van Wyk comes in at fullback after Andries Coetzee suffered a knee injury during the game against the Kings.
Hollenbach will captain the side.Teams:Lions:
15. Coenie van Wyk, 14. Deon van Rensburg , 13. Stokkies Hanekom , 12. Alwyn Hollenbach (captain), 11. Chrysander Botha , 10. Wilie du Plessis, 9. Faf de Klerk, 8. Willie Britz, 7. Ruaan Lerm, 6. Warwick Tecklenburg, 5. Martin Muller, 4. Lourens Erasmus, 3. Bees Roux
, 2. Willie Wepener, 1. Jacques van Rooyen
Substitutes: 16. Malcolm Marx, 17.Charles Marais, 18. Corne Fourie, 19. Stephan Vermeulen, 20. Hugo Kloppers, 21. MB Lusaseni, 22. Stephan de Witt, 23. Ross Cronje, 24. JW Jonker, 25. Ruan Combrinck, 26. Deon HelbergSharks:
15. SP Marais, 14. Odwa Ndungane
, 13. Paul Jordaan
, 12. Francois Steyn
, 11. Lwazi Mvovo
, 10. Patrick Lambie
, 9. Cobus Reinach
, 8. Tera Mtembu, 7. Jean Deysel
, 6. Marcell Coetzee
, 5. Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4. Anton Bresler
, 3. Jannie du Plessis, 2. Bismarck du Plessis (captain), 1. Tendai Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16. Monde Hadebe
, 17. Dale Chadwick
, 18. Lourens Adriaanse
, 19. Stephan Lewies
, 20. Jacques Botes, 21. Ryan Kankowski
, 22. Charl McLeod, 23. Fred Zeilinga
, 24. Heimar Williams
, 25. S'bura Sithole, 26. Jaco van Tonder