The Cell C Sharks will be determined to return to winning ways when they face the defending Vodacom Super Rugby champions, the Highlanders, at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin on Friday morning.
Having gone for four matches without a win, the Durban side will be looking for an accurate and determined performance in their clash with the 2015 champions in this away clash.
The Toyota Cheetahs, meanwhile, start their road trip Down Under on Friday at 11h45 against the improving Rebels in Melbourne. The South Africans rewrote the record books last weekend with their 14-try win over the Sunwolves, but they can expect much more stern opposition from the Melbourne team.
On Saturday, the DHL Stormers get the local action underway when they host the Reds in a 15h00 kick-off at DHL Newlands in Cape Town. The Capetonians are leading the African Conference at the moment but they will face a difficult challenge from the visitors, who would want to improve on their showing last weekend in Pretoria, where they suffered a 41-22 loss against the Vodacom Bulls.
Scrumhalf Nic Groom will play his 50th Vodacom Super Rugby game for the DHL Stormers at DHL Newlands. The 26-year-old takes his place in a DHL Stormers starting line-up, which features five changes and a positional switch for the clash with the Reds, which kicks off at 15h00 on Saturday.
Also on Saturday, the Southern Kings return to action having enjoyed a bye last weekend. The Eastern Cape side host the high-riding Emirates Lions at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in what is expected to be an open, attractive fixture. Kick-off in PE is 17h10.
Elsewhere, the Sunwolves return home on Saturday having completed their maiden competition tour. They face the Jaguares at the Prince Chichibu Stadium in Tokyo in search of their first win in their debut season.
The Hurricanes entertain the in-form Chiefs in an early Saturday morning start in the Westpac Stadium in Wellington, while the Force and Waratahs tackle each other later the same day in Perth. In the only Sunday fixture, the Brumbies clash at home in Canberra with the Crusaders. The Vodacom Bulls have a bye this weekend