Cape Town - Dillyn Leyds will start at wing for the Springboks in Saturday’s Rugby Championship Test against the Wallabies in Bloemfontein.
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Leyds will replace an out-of-sorts Raymond Rhule, who was on Tuesday released from the Springbok squad to play for the Cheetahs in the PRO14.
S’busiso Nkosi was also released to play for the Sharks, which leaves Leyds and Courtnall Skosan as the only recognised wings in the Bok squad.
Jesse Kriel will be the back-up wing in case of an injury.
It will be Leyds’ first start for the Springboks, having played three Tests as a substitute against France in June.
The decision to drop Rhule, who slipped nine tackles in the 57-0 loss to the All Blacks, is undertsandable but nevertheless puzzling given comments made earlier in the week by coach Allister Coetzee.
Coetzee on Monday defended Rhule and indicated that the player won’t be dropped.
“Don’t forget how good Raymond was against Australia. I’m not a coach who will look at one poor performance and chuck someone away. He was outstanding against the Wallabies,” Coetzee was quoted as saying on SuperSport.com.
“There were a few areas where the All Blacks targeted us, but we will work on that and get better. In the seven Tests Raymond has played, he has gained a lot of experience, so now do I just throw him out and start all over again with a new player?”
Other expected changes to the Bok team will come at scrumhalf where the fit-again Ross Cronje will replace Francois Hougaard, while Francois Louw could also feature in the loose trio.
Coetzee will name his Springbok side on Thursday.