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Springboks team to play Wallabies in 2022 Rugby Championship match in Adelaide


Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber has made two changes to his starting side for their Rugby Championship clash with Austrlaia in Adelaoide on Saturday.

Warrick Gelant starts on the right wing and Faf de Klerk is back at scrumhalf following the loss to the All Blacks at Ellis Park.

Gelant takes over from Jesse Kriel on the wing, while De Klerk has completed his return to play protocol after missing the second Test against New Zealand due to concussion and replaces Jaden Hendrikse.

Nienaber also made three changes to the replacements bench, which features a split of five forwards and three backs – another depature form the New Zealand series where he opted for 6-2 but found himself in trouble with early injury issues.

Hendrikse takes over from Herschel Jantjies, while Elton Jantjies will provide flyhalf cover and Frans Steyn additional cover at the back.

Willie le Roux and Jasper Wiese miss out on the 23.

“This is a very important clash for us to set the tone for our tour and we feel that continuity in selection is important to build momentum in our campaign,” said Nienaber in a statement.

“Warrick was in good form for the Stormers earlier this season and he has been working hard at training, so we thought it would be good to give him a run on the wing. He also combined well with Damian Willemse in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship, so we are excited to see what they offer us in the match.

“Faf, meanwhile, is back from concussion and his experience will be important in this game.

“We also feel it is important to give the likes of Ox (Nche), Joseph (Dweba) and Duane (Vermeulen) another opportunity to further build combinations and give them valuable game time as we build toward the Rugby World Cup next year.”

Of the decision to switch from a six-two to a five-three split on the bench, Nienaber said: “We looked at what Australia will bring to the game, and that combined with our need to give Elton and Frans Steyn some vital game time, prompted us to select five forwards and three backs on the bench.

“With Franco (Mostert) and Kwagga (Smith) on the bench, we will have cover at lock and looseforward, while Frans Steyn’s versatility will also be handy as he can cover centre and fullback. These changes obviously mean that Willie, Jasper and Herschel lose out, but we know what we have in them and what they bring to the team.”

Nienaber said he expected a big onslaught from the Wallabies after their loss to Argentina.

“Australia are always a tough force at home and the fact that we haven’t beaten them here since 2013 is evidence of that.

“Much like us, they will also want to bounce back after going down against Argentina, so we expect them to come out firing. The fact that this will be the first Test between the teams in Adelaide will serve as extra motivation for both teams this weekend, so we are preparing for another epic encounter against them.”

Nienaber added: “We had a thorough review of our last match against New Zealand, and we have identified the areas of our game in which we need improve. We know we need to make a big step-up in the quality of our performance to start the tour on a positive note, and that is a big objective for us this weekend.”

Springbok team to face Australia in Adelaide:

15 – Damian Willemse (DHL Stormers) – 20 caps, 12 pts (1t, 2c, 1p)

14 – Warrick Gelant (Racing 92) – 10 caps, 15 pts (3t)

13 – Lukhanyo Am (Cell C Sharks) – 30 caps, 30 pts (6t)

12 – Damian de Allende (Wild Knights) – 62 caps, 35 pts (7t)

11 – Makazole Mapimpi (Cell C Sharks) – 29 caps, 105 pts (21t)

10 – Handre Pollard (Leicester Tigers) – 64 caps, 662 pts (7t, 90c, 144p, 5d)

9 – Faf de Klerk (Yokohama Canon Eagles) – 39 caps, 25 pts (5t)

8 – Duane Vermeulen (Ulster) – 62 caps, 15 pts (3t)

7 – Pieter-Steph du Toit (Toyota Verblitz) – 62 caps, 25 pts (5t)

6 – Siya Kolisi (captain, Cell C Sharks) – 67 caps, 35 pts (7t)

5 – Lood de Jager (Wild Knights) – 60 caps, 25 pts (5t)

4 – Eben Etzebeth (Cell C Sharks) – 102 caps, 15 pts (3t)

3 – Frans Malherbe (DHL Stormers) – 50 caps, 5 pts (1t)

2 – Joseph Dweba (DHL Stormers) – 3 caps, 0pts

1 – Ox Nche (Cell C Sharks) – 11 caps, 0pts

Replacements:

16 – Malcolm Marx (Kubota Spears) – 51 caps, 55 pts (11t)

17 – Steven Kitshoff (DHL Stormers) – 63 caps, 5 pts (1t)

18 – Vincent Koch (Wasps) 36 caps, 0 pts

19 – Franco Mostert (Honda Heat) – 55 caps, 5pts (1t)

20 – Kwagga Smith (Shizuoka Blue Revs) – 23 caps, 5 pts (1t)

21 – Jaden Hendrikse (Cell C Sharks) – 6 caps, 5 pts (1t)

22 – Elton Jantjies (NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes) – 45 caps, 329 pts (2t, 65c, 62p, 1d)

23 – Frans Steyn (Toyota Cheetahs) – 74 caps, 150 pts (11t, 7c, 24p, 3d)





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