Vodacom Blue Bulls coach Pine Pienaar included Tuks flanker Warwick Tecklenburg in his starting team to play defending Absa Currie Cup champions, the MTN Golden Lions, at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
The Nelspruit-born player will replace injured Deon Stegmann in the only enforced change to the side that lost badly to Western Province last weekend, although Francois Venter returns to the number 12 berth after he was a late withdrawal last weekend.
He was replaced on short notice by Jan Serfontein, who returns to the Under-21 squad.
Bongi Mbonambi and Jean Cook are included on the bench.
Mbonambi replaces Robbie Coetzee as back-up hooker after recovering from an ankle injury, whilst Under-21 regular Cook comes in to fill the spot vacated by Tecklenburg.
Both former Junior Boks will make their Currie Cup debuts for the Blue Bulls if they get a run-on.
Pienaar was frank in his assessment of the week ahead.
“We did not show up last weekend and paid the price. This weekend, we play the defending champions, a team that has shown tremendous courage and commitment in recent weeks. It is clear that we will have to be on a different level this weekend.”
The coach remains confident that the same group of players can redeem themselves.
“They do get another opportunity to make things right. Not everybody get a second chance in life and I am convinced that this group will use the opportunity. We have disappointed a lot of people, including ourselves last week, so have no option but to strike back hard.”
Vodacom Blue Bulls:
Clayton Blommetjies, Akona Ndungane, Johann Sadie, Francois Venter, JJ Engelbrecht, Louis Fouchè, Ruan Snyman, Dewald Potgieter (Capt), CJ Stander, Warwick Tecklenburg, Grant Hattingh, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Werner Kruger, Willie Wepener, Dawie Steyn. Replacements: Bongi Mbonambi, Frik Kirsten, Cornell Hess, Jean Cook, Rudy Paige, Lionel Cronjè, Jürgen Visser
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