Van der Merwe, a prolific try-scorer, features out wide in the place of Springbok Sevens star Seabelo Senatla, who is recovering from concussion. Dillyn Leyds shifts to fullback in place of the injured Damian Willemse and Craig Barry takes his place on the right wing.
Dan Kriel gets a run at inside centre as Damian de Allende gets a well-earned rest. Jean-Luc du Plessis starts at flyhalf, while Jano Vermaak and EW Viljoen both make their return to the match day squad via the replacements bench.
Steven Kitshoff, who will again lead the DHL Stormers in the absence of Siya Kolisi, Eben Etzebeth and Pieter-Steph du Toit, is joined in the front row by fellow Springboks Frans Malherbe (prop) and a fit-again Bongi Mbonambi (hooker).
Chris van Zyl also makes his return from injury to link up with Cobus Wiese in the second row, while Jaco Coetzee will be at the back of the scrum, with Johan du Toit and Ernst van Rhyn on the flanks.
The Sunwolves were victorious the last time these two sides met, in Hong Kong in May 2018, coming from behind to beat the Cape side 26-23 to snap a run of four losses to South African opponents. However, the DHL Stormers are difficult customers at home where they have lost just one of their last seven fixtures, which includes five wins and a thrilling draw with the Crusaders.
The DHL Stormers have also amassed 98 points and 15 tries in their two matches against the Sunwolves at DHL Newlands, in 2016 and 2017.
What they said:
DHL Stormers head coach Robbie Fleck said they are looking forward to playing at DHL Newlands this weekend: “We always get incredible support at DHL Newlands, which the team has responded to well in recent home games so we want to deliver another good performance in front of our fans. We will need to bring plenty of energy, but at the same time be as composed and accurate as possible in all that we do. We look forward to the challenge.”
DHL Stormers: 15 Dillyn Leyds, 14 Craig Barry, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Dan Kriel, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Jaco Coetzee, 7 Johan du Toit, 6 Ernst van Rhyn, 5 Chris van Zyl, 4 Cobus Wiese, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff (captain). Replacements: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Wilco Louw, 19 David Meihuizen, 20 Chris Massyn, 21 Jano Vermaak, 22 Josh Stander, 23 EW Viljoen.
Sunwolves: 15 Semisi Masirewa, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Josh Timu, 12 Phil Burleigh, 11 Hosea Saumaki, 10 Hayden Parker, 9 Jamie Booth, 8 Ben Gunter, 7 Shuhei Matsuhashi, 6 Ryota Hasegawa, 5 Tom Rowe, 4 Mark Abbott, 3 Conan O’Donnell, 2 Jaba Bregvadze, 1 Alex Woonton. Replacements: 16 Takuya Kitade, 17 Masataka Mikami, 18 Takuma Asahara, 19 Yuya Odo, 20 Masakatsu Nishikawa, 21 Keisuke Uchida, 22 Timothy Lafaele, 23 Akihito Yamada.
Head to head:
DHL Stormers won: 3
Sunwolves won: 1
DHL Stormers points: 182
Sunwolves points: 108
Average score: 36-22
Date: Saturday, 8 June 2019
SA time: 17h15
Venue: DHL Newlands, Cape Town
Referee: AJ Jacobs
Assistant Referees: Marius van der Westhuizen, Cwengile Jadezweni
Television Match Official: Christie du Preez