Five uncapped players in Springboks’ match-day 23 against Italy

Jun 5 • General News, International, Springbok News, Springboks, World Rugby • 4322 Views • 1 Comment on Five uncapped players in Springboks’ match-day 23 against Italy

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

Five uncapped players in Springboks’ match-day 23

 

Five uncapped players, two of them in the starting line-up, have been selected in the Springbok team to face Italy in the opening round of the Castle Lager Incoming Series at Growthpoint Kings Park in Durban on Saturday afternoon.

Willie le Roux (fullback) and Jano Vermaak (scrumhalf) will earn their Springbok debuts in the starting team, while the trio of uncapped players on the bench are Trevor Nyakane (prop), Arno Botha (loose forward) and Jan Serfontein (centre), who was part of the SA Under-20 team that won the Junior World Championships last year.

Stalwarts Bryan Habana (wing), Pierre Spies (No 8) and Tendai Mtawarira (prop), who missed the tour last November because of injury and health issues, are back in the starting team.

JJ Engelbrecht (centre) will start his first Test for South Africa at outside centre and Bjorn Basson (wing) will earn his seventh cap after last playing for the Springboks during the away leg of the Castle Lager Rugby Championships in 2011.

On the bench, Chiliboy Ralepelle (hooker), who also struggled with injuries last year, is back in the Test match day squad. He will feature in his 22nd Test if he gets game time on Saturday.

Ten players who played in the Springboks’ last Test of 2012, a 16-15 win over England at Twickenham, have been included in the match-23 for Saturday. They are Jean de Villiers, who is also the captain, Willem Alberts, Francois Louw, Juandré Kruger, Eben Etzebeth, Jannie du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Flip van der Merwe, Ruan Pienaar and Pat Lambie.

“This was not an easy team to select as I’ve been very impressed with the attitude shown by the players in training this week,” said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer on Wednesday.

“I’m very happy that we’ve managed to retain the core of the team from last year for the sake of continuity, but it’s also great to see a bunch of new players emerge from Vodacom Super Rugby.

“Upfront we’ve managed to keep six of the eight who started against England and at the back there are a number of very exciting players who have earned their places in the team. I’m very excited to see what this new-look backline can do.

“A number of players just missed out on selection in the match-23, but there is no reason why they can’t force their way into the reckoning next week.”

Commenting on Saturday’s Test, the first against Italy in almost three years, Meyer said: “We respect the Italians but the focus will be on what we want to achieve this weekend.

“In the past they have been regarded as one of the lesser Test nations, but that is no longer the case. Just look at their performances in the Six Nations this year – they beat Ireland and France in Rome and just lost to England in London.

“They have always been exceptionally strong upfront and will test us, especially at scrum time. But they also have some superb backs and are very well led by Sergio Parisse, so we know this will not be a walk in the park.”

The Springbok Test against Italy kicks off at 17h15, after the match between Scotland and Samoa, which starts at 14h15.

 

The Springbok team to face Italy in Durban is:

Position Name Province Test Caps
15 Willie le Roux GWK Griquas 0
14 Bryan Habana DHL Western Province 83
13 JJ Engelbrecht Vodacom Blue Bulls 1
12 Jean de Villiers (captain) DHL Western Province 84
11 Bjorn Basson Vodacom Blue Bulls 6
10 Morné Steyn Vodacom Blue Bulls 42
9 Jano Vermaak Vodacom Blue Bulls 0
8 Pierre Spies Vodacom Blue Bulls 50
7 Willem Alberts The Sharks 20
6 Francois Louw Bath, England 17
5 Juandré Kruger Vodacom Blue Bulls 8
4 Eben Etzebeth DHL Western Province 11
3 Jannie du Plessis The Sharks 42
2 Adriaan Strauss (vice-captain) Toyota FS Cheetahs 21
1 Tendai Mtawarira The Sharks 41
Replacements
16 Chiliboy Ralepelle Vodacom Blue Bulls 21
17 Trevor Nyakane Toyota FS Cheetahs 0
18 Coenie Oosthuizen Toyota FS Cheetahs 2
19 Flip van der Merwe Vodacom Blue Bulls 23
20 Arno Botha Vodacom Blue Bulls 0
21 Ruan Pienaar Ulster, N-Ireland 63
22 Pat Lambie The Sharks 20
23 Jan Serfontein Vodacom Blue Bulls 0

 

Stats and facts:

·         South Africa and Italy have played each other 10 times since 1995, with the Springboks winning all 10 Tests. The Springboks have scored 533 points and 74 tries and conceded 129 points and 11 tries for an average score of 53-13.

·         South Africa and Italy last met on 26 June 2010 in East London. The Springboks won 55-11.

·         Jean de Villiers will extend his record as the most-capped Springbok centre, with 69 Tests in this position.

·         Bryan Habana will extend his record as the most- capped Springbok wing, with 82 Tests in this position.

·         Morné Steyn will extend his record as the most-capped Springbok flyhalf, with 41 Tests in this position.

·         Pierre Spies will extend his record as the most-capped Springbok No. 8, with 45 Tests in this position.

·         Ruan Pienaar and Bryan Habana will both be playing against Italy for the fifth time, equalling the record of Victor Matfield and Andre Venter.

·         Willie le Roux, Jano Vermaak and, if they take the field, Trevor Nyakane, Arno Botha and Jan Serfontein will make their Tests debuts for South Africa.

·         If he scores a try, Bryan Habana will extend his record of 47 Test tries for South Africa.

·         If he scores a try, Morné Steyn will extend his record of seven Test tries as a flyhalf for South Africa.

·         If he scores a try, Pierre Spies will extend his record of seven Test tries as a No. 8 for South Africa.

·         Jean de Villiers, Jannie du Plessis, Ruan Pienaar, Flip van der Merwe and Adriaan Strauss played in all 12 Tests for the Springboks in 2012.

·         The referee is John Lacey of Ireland. It will be his first Test involving South Africa.

 

·         Springbok Test match records at Durban:

o   Most points – 31 by Morné Steyn (1t, 1c, 8p) against New Zealand on 1 August, 2009.

o   Most tries – five by Stefan Terblanche against Italy on 19 June, 1999.

o   Most conversions – eight by Gaffie du Toit against Italy on 19 June, 1999.

o   Most penalty goals – eight by Morné Steyn against New Zealand on 1 August, 2009.

o   Most drop goals – three by Naas Botha against South America on 3 May, 1980 and against Ireland on 6 June 1981.

Related Posts