Golden Lions coach John Mitchell called up Burton Francis as flyhalf in place of the two Springboks, Butch James and Elton Jantjies, for the first Currie Cup match of the season.
The Lions will host the Pumas in Johannesburg on Friday.
Mitchell said his side would be looking to build on the momentum from the Super Rugby competition and, consequently, only made minor changes to the team.
Francis starts at No.10, with Jantjies and Butch away on Springbok duty.
Dylan des Fountain shifts from centre to wing in place of the injured Deon van Rensburg, while Alwyn Hollenbach fills the gap wearing the No.13 jersey.
Hollenbach will be hoping to cement his place in the side before Springbok Waylon Murray recovers from injury in the next couple of weeks.
Lionel Mapoe, who sustained serious facial injuries on the tour to Australasia, is back on the left wing.
The Lions have selected their most effective forwards and will only be missing stalwart JC Janse van Rensburg, who has started at loosehead prop in every other match the team has played this year.
Jacobie Adriaanse gets a start at tighthead in place of Pat Cilliers, who moves to loosehead in the absence of Van Rensburg.
Van Rensburg’s absence gives Caylib Oosthuizen a chance on the bench after a good Varsity Cup campaign.
Lions: 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Dylan Des Fountain, 13 Alwyn Hollenbach, 12 Doppies La Grange, 11 Lionel Mapoe, 10 Burton Francis, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Joshua Strauss, 7 Derick Minnie, 6 Cobus Grobbelaar, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Wikus van Heerden, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 Pat Cilliers.
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Johan Snyman, 19 Dries van Schalkwyk, 20 Michael Bondesio, 21 Hein Cronje, 22 Michael Killian.
Date: Friday, July 15
Kick-off: 19.10 (17.10 GMT)
Venue: Coca-Cola Park, Johannesburg
Referee: Stuart Berry
Assistant referees: Sindile Mayende, Johan Greeff
TMO: JC Fortuin Jerome
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