Ackermann has opted for consistency, selecting the same starting side which beat the Blues 13-10 in Albany last weekend, the first time they’ve beaten the Blues on New Zealand soil.
The bench sees just two changes with new Lions recruit Andries Ferreira providing lock cover and flyhalf Marnitz Boshoff returning to the match day 23.
It will be the big and very physical Ferreira’s, the former Cheetahs lock, debut game for the Lions if he gets game time, while Boshoff is back in the match-day squad for the first time since round two when the Lions face the Sharks in Durban and he fell out of favour, while Elton Jantjies has been in sublime form.
It was the rocket pass from Jantjies which provided the space for the Lions only try last weekend against the Blues by rightwing Ruan Combrinck, who popped up in the leftwing to dive over in the corner for a decisive score.
Boshoff replaces Jaco van der Walt, while Ferreira comes in for Robert Kruger as Ackermann rotated his bench to give everyone in the squad of 27 players a chance to get a run.
Prop Schalk van der Merwe has again not been considered after pulling out with a stomach virus prior to the Blues match last weekend. The only other player who hasn’t come into the selection mix yet is wing Courtnal Skosan, who was the Lions regular rightwing last year.
But former Bull Sampie Mastriet has impressed especially with his work on defence after Ruan Combrinck has been moved to the right wing to allow Mastriet to play in his regular leftwing spot.
Kick-off is at 5.30am South Africa time.
Lions: Andries Coetzee, Ruan Combrinck, Lionel Mapoe, Harold Vorster, Sampie Mastriet, Elton Jantjies, Ross Cronje, Warren Whiteley (capt), Warwick Tecklenburg, Jaco Kriel, Martin Muller, Franco Mostert, Julian Redelinghuys, Robbie Coetzee, Corne Fourie
Bench: Armand van der Merwe, Jacques van Rooyen, Ruan Dreyer, Andries Ferreira, Derick Minnie, Faf de Klerk, Marnitz Boshoff, Howard Mnisi