The Kings have announced three new inclusions to their Super Rugby squad ahead of their clash against the Lions in Johannesburg on Friday.
Head coach Deon Davids has made six changes to his starting line-up, including a change in captaincy with Edgar Marutlulle taking over the role after Steven Sykes was not available for personal reasons.
Four changes up front see Sti Sithole rotating with Schalk Ferreira at loosehead prop, while Jacobie Adriaanse returns at tighthead after missing last week's game against the Highlanders due to a calf strain and Schalk Oelosfe comes in at lock in place of Sykes.
Making his debut for the Southern Kings and earning his first start in the Super Rugby competition is Andile Ntsila, who joined the Kings on loan from the SWD Eagles on Tuesday.
Davids said Ntsila would have a significant role to play as a fetcher for the team, but he was confident in his abilities.
Davids has also opted to start with James Hall at scrum-half, who returns from playing for the SA U20s in England. At fly-half, Elgar Watts moves onto the bench, with Louis Fouche starting.
Also making their Super Rugby debuts are Sintu Manjezi and Jeremy Ward, who will be on the bench for Friday's game, having been called up from the EP Currie Cup squad.
Kings: 15 Malcolm Jaer, 14 Lukhanyo Am, 13 Stefan Watermeyer, 12 Shane Gates, 11 Wandile Mjekevu, 10 Louis Fouche, 9 James Hall, 8 Aidon Davis, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Andisa Ntsila, 5 JC Astle, 4 Schalk Oelofse, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Edgar Marutlulle (c), 1 Sti Sithole
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Schalk Ferreira, 18 Tom Botha, 19 Sintu Manjezi, 20 Jacques Engelbrecht, 21 Ntando Kebe, 22 Dewald Human, 23 Jeremy Ward
Date: Friday, July 8
Venue: Ellis Park, Johanesburg
Kick-off: 19:00 local (17:00 GMT)
Referee: Jaco van Heerden
Assistant Referees: Jaco Peyper, Ben Crouse
TMO: Johann Greeff