The Lions are up against the Rebels this weekend and coach De Bruin keeping faith in his young guns.
Wandisile Simelane had a bit of a rough start last week but quickly got into the game and showed us some of the quality we saw from him with the Junior Boks.
Tyrone Green will also start this weekend at fullback. Green is an exciting player and definitely someone to keep an eye on.
He will have some experience to support him in Ruan Combrinck and Skosan on the wings.
Lions have struggled in the lineouts of late and will be very happy to welcome back Marvin Orie. He has been massive in the defence as well in the games he played this season.
Lewies will partner Orie at lock which will add some of oemf to the pack.
De Bruin also have a string bench with Jan-Henning Campher making his first appearance for the Lions, Sti Sithole returns, as well as Rhyno Herbst and Ruan Vermaak while Lionel Mapoe and Andries Coetzee will also make impact later in the match
Reece Hodge will run out on the wing this weekend as coach Dave Wessels made five changes form the side that beat the Brumbies last weekend.
The Rebels had a good start to the season hand will want to build on that here in South Africa.
Tetera Faulkner, Anaru Rangi, Luke Jones and Ross Haylett-Petty, will also start for the first time this season.
Melbourne Rebels Head Coach Dave Wessels says the decision to move Koroibete to the reserves was motivated by Hodge’s kicking ability, while also keeping the Wallaby winger fresh ahead of a tough run of six consecutive fixtures.
“I thought Marika played really well against the Brumbies,” Wessels said.
“However, we’ve got a run of eight games and we are just trying to be smart about whoever’s taking to the field is fresh and I think Hodgey brings a kicking game at altitude which could be valuable for us.”
Interesting facts (By Opta)
- This will be the fifth Super Rugby match between the Lions and Rebels, with the Johannesburg team prevailing in each of their four prior meetings.
- The Lions have won their last four Super Rugby games at home against teams visiting from outside South Africa, scoring 40 points or more on each occasion in that span.
- The Rebels have won their last three Super Rugby games on the bounce heading into this fixture; a fourth consecutive win would set a club record.
- The Rebels have allowed just four offloads per game this season, fewer than any other team in Super Rugby 2019.
- Elton Jantjies (Lions), Quade Cooper (Rebels) and Will Genia (Rebels) have each made four try assists in Super Rugby 2019, more than any other player in the competition.
Prediction: Lions have a much better tight five and at home will take it by 12
15 Tyrone Green, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Wandisile Simelane, 12 Franco Naude, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies 9 Ross Cronjé, 8 Kwagga Smith, 7 Vincent Tshituka, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Marvin Orie, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Malcolm Marx (captain), 1 Dylan Smith.
Replacements: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Sti Sithole, 18 Frans van Wyk, 19 Rhyno Herbst, 20 Ruan Vermaak, 21 Gianni Lombard, 22 Lionel Mapoe, 23 Andries Coetzee
15 Dane Haylett-Petty (captain), 14 Jack Maddocks, 13 Tom English, 12 Billy Meakes, 11 Reece Hodge, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Isi Naisarani, 7 Brad Wilkin, 6 Luke Jones, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Ross Haylett-Petty, 3 Sam Talakai, 2 Anaru Rangi, 1 Tetera Faulkner
Replacements: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Matt Gibbon, 18 Jermaine Ainsley, 19 Matt Philip, 20 Angus Cottrell, 21 Michael Ruru, 22 Sione Tuipulotu, 23 Marika Koroibete