Bulls name new midfield

Jesse Kriel and Jan Serfontein will start in the Bulls midfield for their warm-up match against the Lions at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on Saturday.

It will be the first time that they play in the centres together. Kriel made all 16 of his appearances for the Bulls last year at fullback, while injuries restricted Serfontein to just eight matches.

Bulls coach Nollis Marais has named a number of youngsters in his match-day squad. Warrick Gelant, Hanro Liebenberg and RG Snyman all played for the Junior Springboks last year, as did Jason Jenkins, who will play off the bench.

Handré Pollard has been ruled out for the entire Super Rugby season because of a knee injury, so Francois Brummer will start at flyhalf with Tian Schoeman on the bench.

Adriaan Strauss will lead the team for the first time since being named captain.

Bulls – 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Arno Botha, 7 Hanro Liebenberg, 6 Nic de Jager, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 RG Snyman, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Adriaan Strauss (c), 1 Trevor Nyakane.
Subs: 16 Jaco Visagie, 17 Lizo Gqoboka, 18 Jason Jenkins, 19 Jannes Kirsten, 20 Piet van Zyl, 21 Tian Schoeman, 22 Burger Odendaal, 23 Werner Kruger, 24 Pierre Schoeman, 25 Jamba Ulengo, 26 Jade Stighling.

Photo: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images

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Simon Borchardt