There are however two changes on the bench for the Peacock Blues’ first home fixture of the new local competition, both of them amongst the forwards.

Andrew Beerwinkel, the former Vodacom Bulls, Phakisa Pumas and Junior Springbok prop, comes into the match day squad in place of Bandisa Ndlovu, while utility forward Ewan Coetzee was also drafted into the replacements in a swap with Johan Momsen.

The team led by George Whitehead made a good impression last weekend against the Vodacom Bulls in Pretoria, where they led on the scoreboard for just over an hour before the home side managed to wrestle control of the match.

Tafel Lager Griquas defended with determination and made good use of their scoring opportunities, however, they will have to cut down on their high penalty count which ultimately left the door open for the Vodacom Bulls to clinch the opening-round fixture through a couple of Morne Steyn penalty goals.

Whitehead and halfback partner Zak Burger (pictured) will also be looking to continue with their good performances. The acquitted themselves very well last weekend in Pretoria against the vastly experienced trio of Steyn (flyhalf), Ivan van Zyl and Embrose Papier (scrumhalves), all of them Springboks.

Tafel Lager Griquas: 15 Anthony Volmink, 14 Daniel Kasende, 13 Harlon Klaasen, 12 André Swarts, 11 James Verity-Amm, 10 George Whitehead (captain), 9 Zak Burger, 8 Niell Jordaan, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Carl Els, 5 Victor Sekekete, 4 Ian Groenewald, 3 John-Roy Jenkinson, 2 HJ Luus, 1 Mox Mxoli. Replacements (from): Alandre van Rooyen, Andrew Beerwinkel, Madot Mabokela, Adre Smith, Zandre Jordaan, Gideon van der Merwe, Ashon Davids, Berton Klaasen, Mzwanele Zito, Ewan Coetzee, Bjorn Basson.

Match information – Tafel Lager Griquas v Phakisa Pumas
Date: Saturday 17 October
Time: 16h30
Venue: Tafel Lager Park, Kimberley
Referee: AJ Jacobs
Assistant Referees: Griffin Colby, Ben Crouse
Television Match Official: Cwengile Jadezweni
TV: SuperSport Grandstand and Rugby