Carlos Spencer has been selected at flyhalf for the Lions’ opening Super 14 match against the Stormers.
The All Blacks pivot will partner another new recruit in JP Joubert at halfback. The newcomers to the Lions backline include Tonderai Chavhanga (Stormers) and 19-year-old Wandile Mjekevu (on debut) while the Cheetahs’ Jonathan Mokuena packs down at No 8.
Coach Dick Muir has opted for an unconventional bench, with Todd Clever, who is primarily a flank, listed as cover for lock. The lineout is an area the Stormers will target, as the Lions are certainly lacking quality in the second row.
Lions -15 Earl Rose, 14 Tonderai Chavhanga, 13 Deon van Rensburg, 12 Doppies la Grange, 11 Wandile Mjekevu, 10 Carlos Spencer, 9 JP Joubert, 8 Jonathan Mokuena, 7 Franco van der Merwe, 6 Cobus Grobbelaar (c), 5 Willem Stoltz, 4 Jacques Lombard, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Hannes Franklin, 1 Heinke van der Merwe.
Subs: 16 Charles Enslie, 17 JC Janse van Rensburg, 18 Todd Clever, 19 Derrick Minnie, 20 Jacques Coetzee, 21 Burton Francis, 22 Michael Killian.