Mitch backs domestic heroes

John Mitchell has selected a side that strongly resembles the 2011 Currie Cup winners for Friday’s pre-season game against the Stormers.

Lionel Mapoe is back from injury and will slot in at centre while Butch James starts at No 10 to offset the loss of the injured Elton Jantjies. The other change sees newcomer Hendrik Roodt installed at No 4 lock.

Otherwise it is a side that played the majority of the 2011 season together and enjoyed some success in the Currie Cup. The coming season will reveal just how much the team has progressed and whether they have the means to challenge for a top six place.

Lions – 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Deon Van Rensburg, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Doppies La Grange, 11 Michael Killian, 10 Butch James, 9 Michael Bondesio, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Joshua Strauss (c), 6 Derick Minnie, 5 Franco Van der Merwe, 4 Hendrik Roodt, 3 Patric Cilliers, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Subs: 16 Callie Visagie, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Jacobie Adriaanse, 19 Stephan Greeff, 20 Ruan Botha, 21 Cobus Grobbelaar, 22 Doppies Le Roux, 23 Anthony Volminc, 24 Dylan Des Fountain, 25 James Kamana, 26 Andries Coetzee.