Rassie Erasmus has named his 35-man squad for the Springboks end-of-year tour.
South Africa Autumn Internationals Squad
Rassie Erasmus has named a side with some subtle changes to the one that needed a last-gasp try to beat France last weekend. Chief among which, Faf de Klerk has been released to go and play for Sale Sharks which means Embrose Papier will make his first start for the Springboks against Scotland on the 17th.
That is the only change in the backline, instead the pack has seen Duane Vermeuelen move to number eight and Pieter-Steph du Toit move to flanker form the second-row. RG Snyman comes in to take up the other second-row slot after Eben Etzebeth’s injury has ruled him out.
“Unfortunately Eben is still not fully fit, which gives RG Snyman another great opportunity to start against one of the top rugby sides,” Erasmus said.
“Moving Duane and Pieter-Steph around in the pack isn’t disrupting at all as both of them are very experienced and have played for us in these positions earlier in the season.”
He continued; “Scotland is a well-coached side, they are difficult to break down and they will present us with a very tough challenge at Murrayfield.
“The matches in the northern hemisphere are all closely fought encounters, with the set-piece battle key, and its important to grab the big moments and finish your opportunities.”
South Africa team to face Scotland in the Autumn Internationals – 17th November
Willie le Roux, Sbu Nkosi, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Aphiwe Dyantyi, Handre Pollard, Embrose Papier, Steven Kitshoff, Malcolm Marx, Frans Malherbe, RG Snyman, Franco Mostert, Siya Kolisi (c), Pieter-Steph du Toit, Duane Vermeulen.
Replacements: Bongi Mbonambi, Thomas du Toit, Vincent Koch, Lood de Jager, Francois Louw, Ivan van Zyl, Elton Jantjies, Cheslin Kolbe.
South Africa team to face France in the Autumn Internationals – 10th November
Willie le Roux, Sbu Nkosi, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Aphiwe Dyantyi; Handré Pollard, Faf de Klerk, Steven Kitshoff, Malcolm Marx, Frans Malherbe, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Franco Mostert, Siya Kolisi (capt), Duane Vermeulen, Warren Whiteley
Replacements: Bongi Mbonambi, Thomas du Toit, Vincent Koch, RG Snyman, Francois Louw, Embrose Papier, Elton Jantjies, Cheslin Kolbe
South Africa team to face England in the Autumn Internationals – 3rd November
Damian Willemse; Sbu Nkosi, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Aphiwe Dyantyi; Handré Pollard, Ivan van Zyl; Steven Kitshoff, Malcolm Marx, Frans Malherbe, Eben Etzebeth, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Siya Kolisi (capt), Duane Vermeulen, Warren Whiteley.
Replacements: Bongi Mbonambi, Thomas du Toit, Wilco Louw, RG Snyman, Lood de Jager, Embrose Papier, Elton Jantjies, André Esterhuizen.
There are some huge names returning to the squad due to injury layoffs or club commitments. For example Trevor Nyakane and Lood de Jager come back after long injury absences, and Duane Vermeulen, Franco Mostert, Willie le Roux, and Francois Louw have all been released by their clubs. Additionally, Gio Aplon returns to the squad having not played for the Springboks since 2012.
However Faf de Klerk will play no part because he has not been released by Sale, and as a result Currie Cup winning captain Louis Schreuder has been called up to replace him.
Finally, there are three completely new faces coming into the squad from Currie Cup finalists Western Province; Ruhan Nel, JD Schickerling and Sergeal Petersen.
The Springboks are coming off an up and down Rugby Championship which saw them lose to Argentina and Australia, but they picked up a huge win against New Zealand in Wellington. They also narrowly lost to New Zealand 32-30 in the second contest and truth be told, the Springboks should have won that Test too.
The All Blacks have named a 51-man squad…
South Africa Autumn Internationals Squad
FORWARDS: Warren Whiteley, Duane Vermeulen, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Francois Louw, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Siya Kolisi (captain), Franco Mostert, Lood de Jager, RG Snyman, JD Schickerling, Eben Etzebeth, Thomas du Toit, Vincent Koch, Wilco Louw, Steven Kitshoff, Frans Malherbe, Trevor Nyakane, Schalk Brits, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi.
BACKS: Willie le Roux, Gio Aplon, Damian Willemse, Sergeal Petersen, Aphiwe Dyantyi, Sbu Nkosi, Cheslin Kolbe, Jesse Kriel, Ruhan Nel, Damian de Allende, Andre Esterhuizen, Handré Pollard, Elton Jantjies, Embrose Papier, Ivan van Zyl, Louis Schreuder.
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