Lions coach Swys de Bruin plans to give youngsters game time as substitutes without disrupting his starting XV.
De Bruin named scrumhalf Marco Jansen van Vuren on the bench for their match against the Jaguares in Johannesburg on Saturday.
The 21-year-old will make his Super Rugby debut should he replace incumbent Ross Cronjé.
‘Ross has been playing a lot lately and needs a bit of backup,’ explained De Bruin. ‘He is tough, so sometimes we don’t need the backup and [fullback] Andries Coetzee can also play scrumhalf.
‘Marco has trained very well and as we carry on, hopefully we can blood some of the youngsters, especially off the bench.
‘For me, it is a very good system if you can blood them that way, with not too much disruption in the starting XV but maybe a change or two on the bench.’
Jansen van Vuren is the latest Lions youngster to get an opportunity in Super Rugby, after wing Aphiwe Dyantyi and flank Hacjivah Dayimani made their debuts in the 26-19 win against the Sharks last week.
‘Sometimes you want to blood the youngsters and sometimes you need to keep continuity. So the whole trick is how to manage it to make sure that you do expose every guy in the squad maximum game time as possible,’ De Bruin added.
‘There is no definitive answer for that. I like continuity, especially with the starting XV as the guys settle easier and if they win then I try not to fool around too much with the lineup.
‘But I have to give the guys a chance like I have done with Marco. He has just trained too well, so it is his chance to be on the bench.’
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