Trio debut for Boks
Cape Town - The uncapped trio of centre Andries Strauss, flyhalf Elton Jantjies and prop Coenie Oosthuizen will make their first appearance in the Springbok jersey on Saturday when they were named in the starting line-up to meet the Barbarians in the season-ending finale at Twickenham.
A fourth player - scrumhalf Charl McLeod - could make his debut from the bench. The match does not have Test status.
The line-up shows 12 changes to the XV who ended the Test series with a 21-11 win over England on Saturday - seven of them forced by injuries and unavailability, while coach Peter de Villiers has taken the opportunity to give game time to squad members who have not appeared to date.
Ruled out by injury are Victor Matfield, Jean de Villiers, Jannie du Plessis, Bismarck du Plessis and Zane Kirchner. Frans Steyn and Ruan Pienaar have returned to their European clubs.
Lock Alistair Hargreaves appears for the first time on tour along with late call-up Odwa Ndungane, while Pat Lambie, Adi Jacobs, Willem Alberts, Adriaan Strauss and CJ van der Linde all make their first starts on tour.
“The newcomers have been waiting for their chance and will bring energy and enthusiasm to the line-up at the end of a long season,” said De Villiers. “They have trained well and been patient throughout the tour and this is their chance to show what they can do.”
Lambie gets his first Springbok start at fullback while Jantjies wears the No 10 jersey.
“They are exciting talents and this way they both get maximum opportunity in the match,” said De Villiers. “But I’ve stressed to them and to all of the team that this match is not about personal performance but about performing as a team – if they do that they will all be successful.”
The Springboks have won three and lost three of their six meetings with the Barbarians since the first game in 1952 and De Villiers said the Springboks faced another severe challenge.
“The Barbarians have brought together a very exciting team that is definitely made to play rugby in the traditional Barbarian style,” said De Villiers. “Nick [Mallett, Barbarians coach] will have taken note of what is an untried backline combination and there’s no doubt he’ll be focusing his attention there.
“But Juan Smith [Springbok captain] and the players are determined to maintain the improvements of this tour and this game is set to be a fascinating contest.”
Bismarck du Plessis has taken a lot of contact and is still recovering, so the decision was taken to rest him for this match.
Springboks: Patrick Lambie, Odwa Ndungane, Adi Jacobs ,Andries Strauss, Lwazi Mvovo, Elton Jantjies, Francois Hougaard, Ryan Kankowski, Juan Smith (captain), Willem Alberts, Alistair Hargreaves, Bakkies Botha, CJ van der Linde, Adriaan Strauss, Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: Bandise Maku, Tendai Mtawarira, Werner Kruger, Flip van der Merwe, Keegan Daniel, Charl McLeod, Gio Aplon.
Barbarians: James O'Connor (Aus), Joe Rococoko (NZ), Drew
Mitchell (Aus), Adam Ashley-Cooper (Aus), Ma'a Nonu (NZ), Matt Giteau
(Aus, capt), Will Genia (Aus), Salvatore Perugini (It), Stephen Moore
(Aus), Neemia Tialata (NZ), Anton van Zyl (Stormers), Chris Jack (NZ),
Rodney So'oialo (NZ), Martyn Williams (Wales), Colin Bourke (Chiefs).
Keven Mealamu (NZ), John Yapp (Wales), Quintin Geldenhuys (It), Daniel
Braid (NZ), Andy Ellis (NZ), Stephen Donald (NZ), Seru Rabeni (Fij).