Tiaan Botes will make his debut for the Pumas in their round three Currie Cup fixture clash with Western Province in Cape Town on Friday.
Pumas hand debut to Botes
Former Southern Kings flyhalf Botes will start the match in a new halfback pairing with Chriswill September.
Botes had watch from the replacements bench as the team ground out a 22-17 victory against Griquas in last week’s Currie Cup action.
Fullback Japie Kleinhans is also in line to make his competition debut for the Pumas if he takes the field from the bench.
Kleinhans is considered ready to make the step up to the Currie Cup after running out for the Lowvelders’ in the SuperSport Rugby Challenge and featuring in a promotion-relegation match previously.
Switching it up
Pumas coach Jimmy Stonehouse has made five changes to the starting lineup that set up the win against Griquas last week, seemingly in the name of workload management and squad development.
Last week’s starting halfback pairing Devon Williams and Ginter Smuts find themselves among the substitutes for the match at Newlands.
The other three changes to the Pumas lineup include a positional switch in the pack, with Darrien Landsberg moving from lock to flanker as regular captain Pieter Jansen van Vuren returns from injury, while loosehead prop Morgan Naude takes over from Dewald Maritz in the front row.
At the back, the experienced Ruwellyn Isbell replaces Etienne Taljaard out on the left wing.
Lock forward Pieter Jansen van Vuren will captain the Pumas in their quest to climb up the table.
The Pumas start the weekend nine points adrift of the Lions, who currently occupy fourth and are on the semi-final bubble. They will take heart from their performance against the Stormers in Super Rugby Unlocked where they went down to a dramatic try after the hooter.
Currie Cup – Pumas team vs Western Province
Pumas: 15 Tapiwa Mafura, 14 Luther Obi, 13 Erich Cronje, 12 Ali Mgijima, 11 Ruwellyn Isbell, 10 Tiaan Botes, 9 Chriswill September, 8 Willie Engelbrecht, 7 Darrien Landsberg, 6 Daniel Maartens, 5 Pieter Jansen van Vuren (captain), 4 Le Roux Roets, 3 Ignatius Prinsloo, 2 Simon Westraadt, 1 Morgan Naude. Replacements: 16 Marko Janse van Rensburg, 17 Wikus Groenewald, 18 Brandon Valentyn, 19 Ewart Potgieter, 20 Ginter Smuts, 21 Devon Williams, 22 Japie Kleinhans, 23 Liam Hendricks.
Match information: Western Province vs Pumas – Where to watch
Date: Friday, 11 December 2020
Venue: Newlands, Cape Town
Referee: Paul Mente
Assistant Referees: Aimee Barrett-Theron and Egon Seconds
TMO: Joey Klaaste-Salmans
TV: SuperSport Grandstand and Rugby