Cape Town - Italy have beaten South Africa only once in the teams’ 14 meetings - but that 2016 loss in Florence (20-18) has not been forgotten by the 10 Springbok survivors for Friday night’s crucial Rugby World Cup clash in Shizuoka.

One of them is centre Damian de Allende.

"That wasn’t a nice feeling – the first time we had lost against them obviously," he said on Wednesday.

"From what I can remember from the game, we played quite loosely and I think their forwards dominated us especially close to our try-line and close to their try-line.

"They stopped a lot of our mauls and they contained us quite well. We got beaten by a better team on the day."

The Springboks, though, have spent the last three years restoring credibility since that shocking loss and they entered this year's World Cup as one of the pre-tournament favourites.

"We have improved a lot," said De Allende.

"We’re aligned in that we all have one goal; and we all want to achieve one thing."

The other Springboks who will feature on Friday and who were a part of the Italy loss are Tendai Mtawarira, Vincent Koch, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Lood de Jager, Willie le Roux, Bongi Mbonambi, Steven Kitshoff, Franco Mostert and Faf de Klerk. 

Kick-off on Friday is at 11:45 (SA time). 


South Africa

15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Tendai Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 RG Snyman, 20 Franco Mostert, 21 Francois Louw, 22 Herschel Jantjies, 23 Frans Steyn


15 Matteo Minozzi, 14 Tommaso Benvenuti, 13 Luca Morisi, 12  Jayden Hayward, 11 Michele Campagnaro, 10 Tommaso Allan, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Sergio Parisse (captain), 7 Jake Polledri, 6 Braam Steyn, 5 Dean Budd, 4 David Sisi, 3 Simone Ferrari, 2 Luca Bigi, 1 Andrea Lovotti

Substitutes: 16 Federico Zani, 17 Nicola Quaglio, 18 Marco Riccioni, 19 Alessandro Zanni, 20 Federico Ruzza, 21 Sebastian Negri, 22 Callum Braley, 23 Carlo Canna