Springbok star Pieter-Steph du Toit will make his long-awaited return from injury for the Stormers in their PRO14 Rainbow Cup SA opener against the Sharks at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.
The 2019 World Rugby Player of the Year was originally sidelined with a leg injury at the end of February last year and will run out in a starting line-up featuring seven Springboks which will be led by skipper Steven Kitshoff.
Lock Marvin Orie and No 8 Willie Engelbrecht will both play their first competitive match for the Stormers in the coastal clash against the Durban side.
Du Toit and Engelbrecht are joined by openside flank Nama Xaba in the loose trio, while Orie is partnered by JD Schickerling at lock and the experienced trio of Kitshoff, Scarra Ntubeni and Frans Malherbe start in the front row.
Herschel Jantjies and Kade Wolhuter make an exciting halfback pairing, with Rikus Pertorius and Ruhan Nel in the midfield, while Damian Willemse, Seabelo Senatla and Edwill van der Merwe form the back-three.
Stormers coach John Dobson said they were determined to start the PRO14 Rainbow Cup SA on a positive note.
"This will be our first competitive match at our new home Cape Town Stadium and we want to ensure that we get some early momentum in this competition.
"The PRO14 Rainbow Cup SA is something we have all been looking forward to and our focus is on delivering a cohesive team performance that makes the most of the considerable talent we have running out for us on Saturday," Dobson told the Stormers website.
Saturday's clash is scheduled for 14:00.
15 Damian Willemse, 14 Edwill van der Merwe, 13 Ruhan Nel, 12 Rikus Pretorius, 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Kade Wolhuter, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Willie Engelbrecht, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Nama Xaba, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 JD Schickerling, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff (captain)
Substitutes (from): 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Ali Vermaak, 18 Neethling Fouche, 19 Ernst van Rhyn, 20 Evan Roos, 21 Paul de Wet, 22 Abner van Reenen, 23 Dan du Plessis, 24 David Meihuizen, 25 Marcel Theunissen, 26 Leolin Zas
15 Aphelele Fassi, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am (captain), 12 Jeremy Ward, 11 Yaw Penxe, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Grant Williams, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Henco Venter, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Fez Mbatha, 1 Ox Nche
Substitutes: 16 Kerron van Vuuren, 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 Wiehahn Herbst, 19 JJ van der Mescht, 20 Phepsi Buthelezi, 21 Sanele Nohamba, 22 Manie Libbok, 23 Werner Kok
??Du Toit returns for DHL Stormers— DHL Stormers (@THESTORMERS) April 30, 2021
??Seven Boks in starting line-up for coastal clash
??'Focus is on delivering a team performance that makes the most of the talent we have running out for us'
??Full team announcement https://t.co/bffmUmJ4Os#iamastormer #dhldelivers