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Where: Loftus Versfeld
When: 15.05 (GMT)
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The Lions form since they returned to Super Rugby two weeks ago has been the biggest surprise yet this season.
The Lions resurgence is not only down to their new star Marnitz Boshoff as the forwards have impressed each week but Boshoff has played a massive part in their revival.
In seasons gone by one would not have to put much thought into who would win in a match between the Bulls and the Lions but with the Bulls current struggling form and the Lions playing the way they have been picking a winner is a difficult task.
Even the Bulls biggest fans will have serious concerns that they might still be winless at the end of the week. Perhaps the loss of Pierre Spies for the season and a new captain will help spark the Bulls.
The last time they lost their opening three rounds of the competition was in 2005, but all three those matches were on the road. This weekend, the team from Pretoria are at their beloved Loftus Versfeld, where they boast a 63% win record in local derbies.
While the Bulls will be trying to avoid their worst-ever start to the season in nearly a decade the Lions will be aiming for a third successive win and their best-ever start to a season.
Last week the Lions ended a 13 match losing streak to the Stormers and they will need another performance in a similar style this week as they have lost their last nine matches to the Bulls.
The Bulls have played the Lions 17 times since 1998 and they have won 12 matches and lost 5 times. There have been no draws between the teams so the Bulls have a record of winning 71% of their matches against the Lions.
The average score when the Bulls play the Lions is : Bulls 32 Lions 25.
This week the match will be played at Loftus Versfeld where the teams have met 9 times. From the nine matches the Bulls have won 6 and lost 3 times. That gives the Bulls a record of winning 67% of their matches against the Lions.
The average score when the Bulls play the Lions at Loftus is Bulls 38 Lions 27.
The Bulls have a new captain in Flip van der Merwe this week and have made a handful of changes. Significantly Jacques-Louis Potgieter starts at flyhalf and Victor Matfield making his first start of the season.
The Lions have made two injury enforced changes with Warwick Tecklenburg coming in for Derick Minnie and JW Jonker coming into the side after Alwyn Hollenbach was unable to pass a fitness test on Thursday.
The Bulls can normally rely on the altitude to kick in at the 60 minute mark when teams visit Pretoria but the Lions will be used to the altitude as Johannesburg is near enough to being at the same height above sea level.
The Lions key man Marnitz Boshoff is also very familiar with playing at Loftus as he spent three seasons there between 2008 and 2011 so he will know the goalposts all too well.
There is an added incentive for the Lions this week as if the Lions can beat the Bulls they will finish the round at the top of the standings as the Sharks have a bye and won’t be picking up four points as they would have last year.
Jurgen Visser , Akona Ndungane , JJ Engelbrecht , Jan Serfontein, Bjorn Basson, Jacques-Louis Potgieter , Francois Hougaard, Grant Hattingh , Jacques du Plessis, Jono Ross, Victor Matfield , Flip van der Merwe (c), Frik Kirsten, Callie Visagie , Dean Greyling .
Replacements: Bongi Mbonambi, Werner Kruger , Marcel van der Merwe, Paul Willemse, Jacques Engelbrecht , Piet van Zyl, Handre Pollard, Ulrich Beyers.
15. Chrysander Botha , 14. Deon van Rensburg , 13. JW Jonker , 12. Stefan Watermeyer , 11. Ruan Combrinck , 10. Marnitz Boshoff , 9. Faf de Klerk , 8. Warren Whiteley (c) , 7. Warwick Tecklenburg , 6. Jaco Kriel , 5. Franco van der Merwe, 4. Franco Mostert , 3. Julian Redelinghuys , 2. Robbie Coetzee , 1. Schalk van der Merwe
Replacements : 16. Willie Wepener , 17. Jacques van Rooyen , 18. Ruan Dreyer , 19. MB Lusaseni , 20. Willie Britz , 21. Ross Cronje , 22. Courtnall Skosan , 23. Coenie van Wyk