The inclusion of Louis Fouché is one of five changes to the Cheetahs’ starting lineup for Saturday’s match against Connacht in Galway.
Coach Franco Smith has been forced to make several alterations to his side following injuries to backs Malcolm Jaer and Benhard Janse van Rensburg.
Jaer is replaced by Fouché at fullback, while Dries Swanepoel comes in for Janse van Rensburg at outside centre.
Up front, Jasper Wiese and JP du Preez start in the second row, with Sintu Manjezi and Walt Steenkamp relegated to the bench. Marnus van der Merwe earns his first start at hooker and Reinach Venter will provide cover on the bench.
Among the substitutes, veteran Henco Venter returns to the side after completing his stint in the Japanese Top League. Smith has also opted to select two scrumhalves in Tian Meyer and Rudy Paige on the bench, although the latter is expected to be used as a utility back.
Cheetahs – 15 Louis Fouché, 14 William Small-Smith, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Nico Lee, 11 Rabz Maxwane, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Shaun Venter (c), 8 Gerhard Olivier, 7 Junior Pokomela, 6 Abongile Nonkontwana, 5 JP du Preez, 4 Jasper Wiese, 3 Aranos Coetzee, 2 Marnus van der Merwe, 1 Charles Marais.
Subs: 16 Reinach Venter, 17 Ox Nche, 18 Luan de Bruin, 19 Sintu Manjezi, 20 Walt Steenkamp, 21 Henco Venter, 22 Tian Meyer, 23 Rudy Paige.
Photo: Shaun Roy/Gallo Images