Warren Whiteley and Ruan Combrinck will make their first starts for South Africa in the deciding third Test against Ireland in Port Elizabeth on Saturday (kick-off 5pm local time/4pm Irish time).
The inclusion of these two players are the only changes to the starting team announced by Springboks boss Allister Coetzee for the game at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. There are also three changes to the bench.
Warren Whiteley replaces experienced number 8 Duane Vermeulen, who is out with an elbow injury, while winger Ruan Combrinck the man-of-the-match in last weekend’s comeback win over Ireland, gets the starting nod over Lwazi Mvovo, who is now on the bench.
An ankle injury has ruled out prop Trevor Nyakane, and his place among the reserves is filled by the uncapped Steven Kitshoff. He is joined on the bench by another uncapped player, Jaco Kriel, who comes into the matchday squad for the first time during the series.
Adriaan Strauss will lead the ‘Boks for the third time on Saturday, with the hooker looking to lead his country to a series win over Ireland. The series is currently tied 1-1 after Ireland’s opening 26-20 victory in Cape Town and the Springboks’ triumph last Saturday on the Highveld.
“It will be another huge battle between the sides on Saturday,” said Coetzee. “Both sides have suffered injuries before and during the series, but that is part of the game and it again provides opportunities for others to come in and stake their claim.
“Jaco has been close to selection every time and he now gets his chance in the matchday squad. Steven has worked extremely hard since we got together as a team and he also has an opportunity to show his promise should he take to the field.
“We know what is at stake on Saturday – it’s a matter of winner-takes-all scenario. This group of players will continue to grow together as a team and Saturday they have the opportunity to gain more experience by playing together.”
SOUTH AFRICA Team & Replacements (v Ireland, 2016 Summer Series Third Test, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth, Saturday, June 25, kick-off 5pm local time/4pm Irish time):
15. Willie le Roux (Cell C Sharks)
14. Ruan Combrinck (Emirates Lions)
13. Lionel Mapoe (Emirates Lions)
12. Damian de Allende (DHL Stormers)
11. JP Pietersen (Cell C Sharks)
10. Elton Jantjies (Emirates Lions)
9. Faf de Klerk (Emirates Lions)
1. Tendai Mtawarira (Cell C Sharks)
2. Adriaan Strauss (Vodacom Bulls) (capt)
3. Frans Malherbe (DHL Stormers)
4. Eben Etzebeth (DHL Stormers)
5. Pieter-Steph du Toit (DHL Stormers)
6. Francois Louw (Bath)
7. Siya Kolisi (DHL Stormers)
8. Warren Whiteley (Emirates Lions)
16. Bongi Mbonambi (DHL Stormers) *
17. Steven Kitshoff (Bordeaux-Begles) *
18. Julian Redelinghuys (Emirates Lions)
19. Franco Mostert (Emirates Lions)
20. Jaco Kriel (Emirates Lions) *
21. Rudy Paige (Vodacom Bulls)
22. Morne Steyn (Stade Francais)
23. Lwazi Mvovo (Cell C Sharks)
* Denotes uncapped player at this level