The decision itself was, according to South Africa's Manager of Referees Andre Watson, a difficult one to make as both Kaplan and Lawrence had impressed throughout the Currie Cup season.
"This obviously gives a very clear indication that both gentlemen, who had refereed superbly throughout the year in all competitions, deserved to referee the final," said Watson.
"Both referees are worthy of refereeing the final, but, and unfortunately, only one referee can do so.
"Mark Lawrence will be the official reserve should Jonathan not be able to referee the game."
With the referees' selectors unable to decide between the two contenders, the final decision was made by the SA Referees' Executive and Oregan Hoskins, the President of SARU.
Lawrence will referee the semi-final between the Sharks and the Golden Lions this Saturday, with Craig Joubert in charge of the Blue Bulls vs the Cheetahs.