Cape Town - Faf de Klerk and Elton Jantjies remain part of the Springboks’ plans going forward, coach Allister Coetzee insists.
The Lions halfbacks were on Thursday dropped from the Springbok 23-man squad for Saturday’s Test against the Wallabies in Pretoria, with Rudy Paige and Morne Steyn picked at Nos 9 and 10 respectively.
“Rudy Paige and Morne Steyn are very familiar with the Loftus conditions. They’ve been working hard in the system and it’s a great opportunity for them to get a start this weekend,” Coetzee said on SuperSport Blitz after naming his team on Thursday.
The coach though made it clear that De Klerk and Jantjies should not get despondent, despite not even cracking nods on the bench.
“Players like Elton and Faf are part of the system going forward. Yes, there are things that we need to improve on. They will work at what they need to improve on,” said Coetzee.
“There is a plan on the table but Steyn and Paige fit in and suit the way we want to play this weekend.”
With the versatile Pat Lambie named at fullback, there was no need to include Jantjies as back-up flyhalf, while Francois Hougaard - who again starts on the left wing - also provides cover at scrumhalf.
Willie le Roux’s inclusion on the bench means there is also no place in the squad for Johan Goosen, who started at fullback in all South Africa’s Rugby Championship games thus far.
Kick-off for Saturday’s Test at Loftus Versfeld is scheduled for 17:05.
15 Pat Lambie, 14 Bryan Habana, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Juan de Jongh, 11 Francois Hougaard, 10 Morne Steyn, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Oupa Mohoje, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Vincent Koch, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Julian Redelinghuys, 19 Lood de Jager, 20 Willem Alberts, 21 Jaco Kriel, 22 Lionel Mapoe, 23 Willie le Roux
15 Israel Folau, 14 Dane Haylett-Petty, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Bernard Foley, 11 Reece Hodge, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Sean McMahon, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Dean Mumm, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Adam Coleman, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Stephen Moore (captain), 1 Scott Sio
Substitutes (from): 16 James Hanson, 17 James Slipper, 18 Tom Robertson, 19 Kane Douglas, 20 Scott Fardy, 21 Lopeti Timani, 22 Nick Phipps, 23 Tevita Kuridrani, 24 Sefa Naivalu