Home Sport Springbok big guns return to face Ireland

Springbok big guns return to face Ireland

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Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus hauled out the big guns for Saturday’s Test against 
Ireland at Loftus Versfeld, including 12 players from last year’s 12-11 World Cup final win over the All Blacks.

The Springbok starting XV includes 12 players from last year’s 12-11 World Cup final win over New Zealand. File Picture: Phando Jikelo

Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus hauled out the big guns for Saturday’s Test against 
Ireland at Loftus Versfeld (5pm).

With Siya Kolisi back to lead a team which sports eight changes from the one that beat Wales 52-16 at Twickenham two weeks ago.

Loose-forward Kwagga Smith is one of the seven players – the others being Jesse Kriel, Faf de Klerk, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Franco Mostert, Eben Etzebeth and Ox Nche – who have kept his place in the side, but has been switched from flank to No.8 in what is perhaps the only surprise in the matchday squad.

Smith will be making his third appearance at No.8 in a Bok run-on team, as Stormers ace Evan Roos got dropped after starting in the role against Wales.

The starting XV, meanwhile, includes 12 players from last year’s 12-11 World Cup final win over New Zealand. One of them is wing Cheslin Kolbe, who battled with injury in the build-up to the Test.

Furthermore, Erasmus also went with six forwards and two backline players on the bench.

Two of those replacements are Stormers duo, lock Salmaan Moerat and utility back Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu, of whom Erasmus, says: “Sacha, similarly to Grant [Williams], also offers us additional options in the backline…

“Salmaan may only have a few Test caps, but he’s a former Junior Springbok captain, he captains the Stormers, and like Sacha, comes through our Elite Player Development system…”

SPRINGBOKS:

15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 10 Handré Pollard 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Kwagga Smith, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Siya Kolisi (capt), 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Ox Nche.

Replacements: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Gerhard Steenekamp, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Salmaan Moerat, RG Snyman, Marco van Staden, 22 Grant Williams, 23 Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu.

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