Warren Whiteley (No 8) and Ruan Combrinck (wing) will make their first starts for the Springboks in the deciding third Test against Ireland in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
The inclusion of these two players are the only changes to the starting team announced by Springbok coach Allister Coetzee for the third Castle Lager Incoming Series Test against the Irish in the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. Coetzee also made three changes to the bench.
Whiteley replaces the experienced Duane Vermeulen, who is out with an elbow injury, while Combrinck, man of the match in last week’s win over the Irish in Johannesburg, 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 amongst 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 match day 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 the South Africans to a series win over Ireland. The series is currently tied 1-1 after Ireland’s opening win in Cape Town and the Springboks’ victory last week on the Highveld.
The Springboks have been hard at work this week to prepare themselves for what promises to be another intriguing battle between the two sides. Coetzee said the Boks are looking forward to playing the Irish in PE.
“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 it 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 match day 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.”
The Springbok team to face Ireland in Port Elizabeth:
15. Willie le Roux Cell C Sharks 36 caps, 45 points
14. Ruan Combrinck Emirates Lions 1 cap, 5 points
13. Lionel Mapoe Emirates Lions 3 caps, 0 points
12. Damian De Allende DHL Stormers 15 caps, 10 points
11. JP Pietersen Cell C Sharks 68 caps, 115 points
10. Elton Jantjies Emirates Lions 4 caps, 25 points
9. Faf de Klerk Emirates Lions 2 caps, 0 points
8. Warren Whiteley Emirates Lions 5 caps, 5 points
7. Siya Kolisi DHL Stormers 15 caps, 0 points
6. Francois Louw Bath, England 45 caps, 40 points
5. Pieter-Steph du Toit DHL Stormers 10 caps, 5 points
4. Eben Etzebeth DHL Stormers 46 caps, 10 points
3. Frans Malherbe DHL Stormers 14 caps, 0 points
2. Adriaan Strauss (captain) Vodacom Bulls 56 caps, 30 points
1. Tendai Mtawarira Cell C Sharks 77 caps, 10 points
16. Bongi Mbonambi DHL Stormers 0 caps, 0 points
17. Steven Kitshoff Bordeaux, France 0 caps, 0 points
18. Julian Redelinghuys Emirates Lions 4 caps, 0 points
19. Franco Mostert Emirates Lions 1 caps, 0 points
20. Jaco Kriel Emirates Lions 0 caps, 0 points
21. Rudy Paige Vodacom Bulls 3 caps, 0 points
22. Morne Steyn Stade Francais 61 caps, 694 points
23. Lwazi Mvovo Cell C Sharks 17 caps, 30 points