Van der Merwe has successfully completed his injury recovery, from a head blow sustained in their home defeat in Kimberley against the Xerox Lions on 28 November, and returns to play in the No 6 jersey. He comes back into the starting side and replaces CJ Velleman who is now set to come off the bench.
The return of the loose forward is one of several changes to the forward pack, where a changed front row of Andrew Beerwinkel, Alandre van Rooyen and John-Roy Jenkins will start the match.
Their Round Four away match against the Vodacom Bulls was cancelled because of Covid-19 measures, while their previous outing was a 22-17 loss to the Phakisa Pumas in Nelspruit on 4 December.
Skipper Zak Burger and his teammates are set to have their captain’s run on Christmas morning before boarding a flight to Cape Town later in the day.
The winless Kimberley outfit has come very close to victory in their previous matches and they will be determined to deliver a good performance against Siya Kolisi and his DHL WP side on their home turf.
Tafel Lager Griquas: 15 James Verity-Amm, 14 Eduan Keyter, 13 Berton Klaasen, 12 Andre Swarts, 11 Enver Brandt, 10 Tinus de Beer, 9 Zak Burger (captain), 8 Johan Momsen, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Gideon van der Merwe, 5 Cameron Lindsay, 4 Adre Smith, 3 John-Roy Jenkinson, 2 Alandre van Rooyen, 1 Andrew Beerwinkel. Replacements (from): 16 HJ Luus, 17 Mox Mxoli, 18 Tijde Visser, 19 Ewan Coetzee, 20 Siba Qoma, 21 CJ Velleman, 22 Ashlon Davids, 23 Daniel Kasende, 24 Bandisa Ndlovu, 25 Raegan Oranje.
Match information – DHL Western Province vs Tafel Lager Griquas
Date: Saturday, 26 December 2020
Venue: DHL Newlands, Cape Town
Referee: AJ Jacobs
Assistant Referees: Cwengile Jadezweni, Divan Uys
TMO: Joey Klaaste-Salmans
TV: SuperSport Grandstand and Rugby