Rugby Championship

Coetzee turns to familiar midfield

2016-10-06 14:30
Damian de Allende

Durban - Springbok coach Allister Coetzee says his decision to select Damian de Allende at No 12 for Saturday's Rugby Championship clash against the All Blacks was based largely on his partnership with Juan de Jongh at the Stormers.

Jesse Kriel, who has been favoured at No 13 by Coetzee in recent weeks, did not pass a fitness test (groin) and has been ruled out of the match. 

That sees De Allende return to the Bok side in the No 12 jersey while Juan de Jongh moves to No 13 in a midfield that Coetzee used many times during his tenure at the Stormers. 

De Allende has been nowhere near his best this year after having suffered a serious ankle injury at the beginning of the Super Rugby season. 

He is back now, and Coetzee said he expected him to bring direct, physical running to the table against the world champions.

"In all honesty, Juan de Jongh has been the live-wire when it comes to our defensive organisation. His communication has given us a lot of confidence.

"It is the first time they are playing together (for the Boks) and I'm looking forward to the contest."

Speaking about De Allende, Coetzee said he knew exactly what to expect.

"You look at Damian and you see what he did last year when he was rated the best No 12 in the world by you guys," said Coetzee.

"It's simple ... he dominated the gain line. That's what teams want to do and they want a 12 who can do that ... he is.

"There may a bit of rain in the morning and we might want some nice straight and hard, direct running right into the defence ... Damian is the man."

Teams:

South Africa

15 Pat Lambie, 14 Francois Hougaard, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morne Steyn, 9 Faf de Klerk, 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

New Zealand

15 Ben Smith, 14 Israel Dagg, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Waisake Naholo, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Joe Moody

Substitutes: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Charlie Faumuina, 19 Liam Squire, 20 Ardie Savea, 21 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22 Lima Sopoaga, 23 George Moala

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