Robert du Preez to start at fly-half for Sharks

Sharks boss Robert du Preez has blended youth and experience in his starting line-up for Saturday's Super Rugby opener with the Lions in Johannesburg.

Robert du Preez to start at fly-half for Sharks

Robert du Preez to start at fly-half for Sharks

Du Preez has selected his son, Robert du Preez Junior, at fly-half while Lwazi Mvovo is a surprise selection at full-back ahead of fellow Springbok utility back Curwin Bosch.

The younger Du Preez and wing Makazole Mapimpi will be making their competitive debuts for the Durban-based franchise, having both featured prominently in the warm-ups.

The backline duo joined the Sharks from the Stormers and Cheetahs respectively.

Second-row Ruan Botha leads a generally very experienced pack, while Philip van der Walt and Andre Esterhuizen are both named to start following their Japanese club commitments during the off-season.

Sharks: 15 Lwazi Mvovo, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Cameron Wright, 8 Keegan Daniel, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Ruan Botha (c), 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Juan Schoeman  Replacements: 16 Akker van der Merwe, 17 John-Hubert Meyer, 18 Tendai Mtawarira, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Daniel du Preez, 21 Michael Claassens, 22 Curwin Bosch, 23 Kobus van Wyk

Date: Saturday, February 17 Venue: Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg Kick-off: 17:15 local (15:15 GMT) Referee: Glen Jackson Assistant referees: AJ Jacobs, Cwengile Jadezweni TMO: Marius Jonker

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