Elton Jantjies will make just his second start this season when the Lions take on the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.
A shoulder injury saw Jantjies on the sidelines when Super Rugby kicked off, which allowed Marnitz Boshoff to kick the Lions to wins against the Cheetahs and Stormers. Jantjies wore the Lions No 10 jersey against the Sharks at Kings Park in March, but then returned to the bench as coach Johan Ackermann opted again for Boshoff. Jantjies, though, is back in the XV for the Lions' first tour match, against the defending champions, and will have the opportunity to show that he should stay there.
In other changes to the Lions' starting side, Deon van Rensburg makes a return to the right wing, while Warren Whiteley is back at No 8.
The Chiefs, meanwhile, have made 14 changes to their match 23, including nine to the starting XV, following their loss to the Brumbies in Canberra last week. Hooker Nathan Harris and prop Josh Hohneck get their first starts of the season while Tanerau Latimer moves into the No 6 jersey. Tawera Kerr-Barlow is the starting scrumhalf with James Lowe getting his first start on the wing since returning from injury. Tom Marshall comes in at inside centre and is joined in the midfield by Charlie Ngatai. Dwayne Sweeney starts on the right wing, while Tim Nanai-Williams moves from the wing back to fullback.
The Chiefs will start this match as heavy favourites, having won their last four encounters against the Lions, averaging 44 points per game. The Lions, though, will take heart from the fact that their scrum success rate of 91% is the best in the competition this year, while the Chiefs have the worst lineout success rate (76%).
HEAD TO HEAD
Overall: Chiefs 12, Lions 5
In Hamilton: Chiefs 7, Lions 1
* Includes Cats matches
JANTJIES' STATS THAT MATTER
1 – The number of matches he's started for the Lions this season, against the Sharks in Durban
54 – The number of minutes he played in that match before being substituted
Chiefs – 15 Tim Nanai-Williams, 14 Dwayne Sweeney, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Tom Marshall, 11 James Lowe, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Liam Messam (c), 7 Sam Cane, 6 Tanerau Latimer, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Ross Filipo, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Pauliasi Manu.
Subs: 16 Mahonri Schwalger, 17 Jamie Mackintosh, 18 Ben Tameifuna, 19 Matt Symons, 20 Michael Fitzgerald, 21 Brad Weber, 22 Bundee Aki, 23 Andrew Horrell.
Lions – 15 Chrysander Botha, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (c), 7 Derick Minnie, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Martin Muller, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Schalk van der Merwe.
Subs: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Ruan Dreyer, 19 MB Lusaseni , 20 Willie Britz, 21 Ross Cronjé, 22 Marnitz Boshoff, 23 JW Jonker.
Photo: Steve Haag/Gallo Images