Lions coach Johan Ackermann is using Friday night's warm-up match against the Sharks to test the depth in his squad.
Ackermann has made wholesale changes to the team that beat the Kings 19-12 in Port Elizabeth for the Ellis Park encounter.
'Of course it is important for us to avoid further injuries so we have decided to rest some of our players,' he said. 'However, I also believe Friday’s game will give some of our young players an opportunity to express themselves and gain some valuable experience. It will be a chance for them to put their hands up for the future.'
In the forwards, loosehead prop Jacques van Rooyen, openside flank Warwick Tecklenburg and No 8 Willie Britz move up from the bench into the starting XV. Tighthead prop Bees Roux, locks Lourens Erasmus and Martin Muller, and blindside flank Ruaan Lerm have also been drafted in after solid performances during the Golden Lions' Vodacom Cup warm-up game against the Blue Bulls in Polokwane.
In the backline, Willie du Plessis moves into the starting line-up at flyhalf as Faf de Klerk comes in at scrumhalf. Alwyn Hollenbach and Stokkies Hanekom have been brought into the midfield, while Deon van Rensburg will start on the right wing. Coenie van Wyk comes in at fullback after Andries Coetzee suffered a knee injury during the game against the Kings.
Lions – 15 Coenie van Wyk, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Stokkies Hanekom, 12 Alwyn Hollenbach (c), 11 Chrysander Botha, 10 Willie du Plessis, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Willie Britz, 7 Ruaan Lerm, 6 Warwick Tecklenburg, 5 Martin Muller, 4 Lourens Erasmus, 3 Bees Roux, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Subs: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Corné Fourie, 19 Stephan Vermeulen, 20 Hugo Kloppers, 21 MB Lusaseni, 22 Stephan de Witt, 23 Ross Cronjé, 24 JW Jonker, 25 Ruan Combrinck, 26 Deon Helberg.
Photo: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images