10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
Moving Shane Horgan into the centre to join Brian O'Driscoll is re-uniting a partnership that works in the Heineken Cup for Leinster. It may not be the same dynamic as with Gordon and it's not the same dynamic as with Kevin Maggs - I think it is something in between.
"It was a tough decision not to go with Kevin but it is a different mix and it is something we want to look at. I think it is an interesting cocktail.
"This is the last game of the season and we really want to give it a good rattle. The team feels disappointed after last week. There is no hiding the fact that we underperformed as a team.
" The only good thing about losing last Saturday is that we have this chance to put things right.
"If we were going home last weekend we would have been very disappointed."
Looking ahead to Saturday's Test O'Sullivan expressed optimism. "I'm expecting a good performance as we just did not perform last week. This is our 15th Test since last August, pretty unprecedented.
" Overall it has been a successful year but to finish on a low here would take some of the good out of it.
"In fairness to the Springboks, they defended very well. Then again we did not make it easy for ourselves by not getting the platform we normally get at the line out, so in a sense we made it easy for them to defend.
"There was a point in the game when we had a try disallowed at a line out. God only knows why. We retrieved the ball and took it quickly. The referee called it back. I think there was confusion as the touch judge kept his flag up but he had only held it up to mark the spot. That was at 21-14. 21 all would have put us back in the game with a whiff - but overall it would have been grand larceny to win."
"Losing Darcy does not help us. He is a world class player. That's the way the dice rolls. You cut your cloth and get on with it. We should not throw every plan we have out the window because we lose one player. But it is an issue, no doubt about it.
"Your big fear coming down here is that your players are tired after a long season. All the Southern Hemisphere teams lost last weekend. We are all having a tough time at the moment. There is the chance for us to make history on Saturday - that has not passed us by.
" If we don't win on Saturday, people will ask if the team has gone backwards. Now, I doubt it, but we may not have gone as far forward as we thought.