Lions suffer double Bok blow
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: The Lions have been forced to switch up their pack ahead of the United Rugby Championship Round 15 clash against the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
The Lions will head into the challenging Trans-Juksei derby without Springbok pair Jaco Kriel and Ruan Dreyer.
Kriel sustained an injury during last week’s win over Glasgow Warriors, while Ruan Dreyer has been suspended for three weeks.
Kriel’s absence means that Emmanuel Tshituka will don the No.6 jersey, while Ruan Venter moves from lock to openside flank.
Ruan Smith will fill the void left by Ruan Dreyer on the bench.
The good news is that Willem Alberts returns after being rested. Alberts slots in at lock.
The backline is unchanged.
Lions: 15 Quan Horn, 14 Sibahle Maxwane, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Marius Louw (captain), 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Gianni Lombard, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Francke Horn, 7 Ruan Venter 6 Emmanuel Tshituka, 5 Ruben Schoeman, 4 Willem Alberts, 3 Asenathi Ntlabakanye, 2 Pieter Botha, 1 Jean-Pierre Smith.
Replacements: 16 Morné Brandon, 17 Rynhardt Runsburger, 18 Ruan Smith, 19 Ruhan Delport, 20 Jarod Cairns, 21 Morné van den Berg, 22 Rynhardt Jonker, 23 Andries Coetzee.
Date: Saturday, March 4
Venue: Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Pretoria
Kick-off: 16.45 (14.45 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Aimee Barrett-Theron (South Africa), Griffon Colby (South Africa)
TMO: Quinton Immelman (South Africa)