Thembelani Bholi will wear the Bulls No 7 jersey against the Hurricanes at Loftus on Saturday.
The former Kings and Pumas player joins Hanro Liebenberg and Roelof Smit in the loose trio. The team’s co-captain Nic de Jager has been named on the bench.
Lood de Jager and RG Snyman are the lock pairing for the Bulls’ season opener, while hooker Jaco Visagie will scrum down between props Frans van Wyk and Pierre Schoeman.
In the backline, Warrick Gelant retains his place at fullback with Travis Ismaiel and Johnny Kotze on the wings. Jesse Kriel will play outside centre with Burger Odendaal on his inside.
Handré Pollard and André Warner form the halfback-axis.
Bulls – 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Burger Odendaal (c), 11 Johnny Kotze, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 André Warner, 8 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Thembelani Bholi, 6 Roelof Smit, 5 Lood de Jager, 4 RG Snyman, 3 Frans van Wyk, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Subs: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Lizo Gqoboka, 18 Conraad van Vuuren, 19 Nic de Jager, 20 Marco van Staden, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Marnitz Boshoff, 23 Divan Rossouw.
Photo: Philip Maeta/Gallo Images