The Bulls will face the Sharks at Loftus Versfeld on Friday with nine players who have not played for the franchise before and six who will play in their first Super Rugby match of their career.
Bulls coach Frans Ludeke named his side in Pretoria on Tuesday and new captain Pierre Spies will lead a side that fields debutants Francois Venter, Jacques Potgieter and Juandré Kruger in the starting team and CJ Stander, Louis Fouché and JJ Engelbrecht on the bench.
Johann Sadie (Stormers), Jano Vermaak and Willie Wepener (both Lions) have played in the competition before, but for other teams.
Ludeke still selected no less than 11 Springboks for the season's opener and he believes experience will be vital.
"We have some new faces and we are very excited about their possible contribution, but we also have some old hands with lots of experience and who have won this competition before," he said.
"We have worked hard in pre-season and I am pleased to say that the squad has come together well under Pierre's leadership. We are keen to kick-off our campaign."
However, Ludeke admits that the Sharks will be a massive game first up.
"They beat us at Loftus last year and basically knocked us out of the play-offs, so will have confidence to play here. They are a class side full of internationals and we will have to execute our game plan to perfection to beat them," he conceded.
Spies indicated that the new-look Bulls will be eager and ready.
"We are committed to start a new era at the Bulls and I am pleased with the way every player has responded to that vision. We are a new team, but share the same values and vision and that will be of big value to us," Spies said.
Bulls: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 Johann Sadie, 12 Francois Venter, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies (captain), 7 Jacques Potgieter, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Willie Wepener, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 19 CJ Stander, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Louis Fouché, 22 JJ Engelbrecht.
Date: Friday, February 24
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 19.10 (17.10 GMT)
Referee: Jonathan Kaplan (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Pro Legoete (South Africa), Tiaan Jonker (South Africa)
TMO: Gerrie Coetzee (South Africa)
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