Bulls v Stormers - Super Rugby match preview

Last Updated: 22/02/13 5:44pm

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Former Lions winger Lionel Mapoe is one of two debutants in the Bulls line-up for Friday's Super Rugby opener with the Stormers.

Mapoe, who also had a brief spell at the Cheetahs, is joined in the starting XV by prop Morne Mellett.

It will be a belated debut for Mellett after he toured with the Bulls last season but failed to make an appearance.

South Africa internationals Dean Greyling, Akona Ndungane and Jacques Potgieter all miss the clash due to injury, though, while Emerging Springbok lock Wilhelm Steenkamp is also out of action.

Bolster

The Stormers will hand debuts to Jaco Taute, Elton Jantjies, Damian de Allende and Pat Cilliers at Loftus Versfeld.

Taute, de Allende and Jantjies will bolster the back division, while Cilliers starts at tighthead prop.

Martin Bezuidenhout is also poised to make his first appearance for the side after being named on the bench as cover for hooker Deon Fourie.

Joining Bezuidenhout among the replacements will be fit-again Nizaam Carr and Dewaldt Duvenage - with the duo having missed large parts of last year with injury.

Bulls: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Lionel Mapoe, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Morne Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies (c), 7 Dewald Potgieter, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Juandre Kruger, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Morne Mellett.
Replacements: 16 Willie Wepener, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Grant Hattingh, 19 Arno Botha, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Louis Fouchè, 22 Francois Venter.

Stormers: 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Gio Aplon, 13 Jean de Villiers (c), 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Rynhardt Elstadt, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 De Kock Steenkamp, 3 Pat Cilliers, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Frans Malherbe, 18 Don Armand, 19 Nizaam Carr, 20 Dewaldt Duvenage, 21 Gerhard van den Heever, 22 Joe Pietersen.

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