Cape Town - Ireland coach Joe Schmidt says he was not surprised by the two changes made by Springbok coach Allister Coetzee ahead of Saturday’s final Test in Port Elizabeth.
No 8 Warren Whiteley and wing Ruan Combrinck have been elevated to the Springbok starting team after impressive performances off the bench last week saw the hosts overturn a 16-point deficit at half-time to win 32-26.
"Whiteley and Combrinck both scored tries against us in Johannesburg and both made big impressions,” Schmidt told Netwerk24.
“The way in which they (the Springboks) finished in the second Test, it’s really not a surprise to me that those two guys are in the starting team.”
Schmidt also said he didn’t expect Coetzee to make wholesale changes for every game in the three-Test series.
“To get and maintain rhythm you need continuity in your team selections. Unlike in my case, Allister also doesn’t have players who are tired after a long season. So he has no need to rest anyone.”
Despite admitting that his squad is tired, there will be no extra effort to motivate Ireland before Saturday’s series-deciding Test.
“They motivate themselves. I don’t have to say anything. They are proud to play for Ireland,” said Schmidt.
Meanwhile, Schmidt made five changes in personnel and one positional switch from the team that went down at Ellis Park.
Fullback Jared Payne has been ruled out and his place will be taken by Tiernan O'Halloran, who came off the bench last week.
The uncapped Matt Healy is named amongst the replacements as is Eoin Reddan, who has announced that he will retire from rugby after the match.
Hooker Rory Best will captain Ireland for the 12th time and is re-joined in the front row by Mike Ross, while loosehead prop Jack McGrath is set for his third start of the tour.
Devin Toner and the versatile Iain Henderson reunite in the second row, with flanks CJ Stander and Jordi Murphy returning to the back row to link up with No 8 Jamie Heaslip, who scored his 13th try for Ireland last weekend.
Conor Murray continues his partnership with Paddy Jackson at half-back for what will be his 50th cap. The Limerick man will be the third scrumhalf after Peter Stringer (98) and Eoin Reddan (70) to hit the half-century for Ireland.
Luke Marshall returns to the starting line-up and switches to outside centre with his Ulster colleague Olding retaining the No 12 jersey. Andrew Trimble and Keith Earls complete the back-three alongside O'Halloran.
15 Willie le Roux, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 JP Pietersen, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Julian Redelinghuys, 19 Franco Mostert, 20 Jaco Kriel, 21 Rudy Paige, 22 Morne Steyn, 23 Lwazi Mvovo
15 Tiernan O'Halloran, 14 Andrew Trimble, 13 Luke Marshall, 12 Stuart Olding, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Conor Murray, 8 Jamie Heaslip, 7 Jordi Murphy, 6 CJ Stander, 5 Devin Toner, 4 Iain Henderson, 3 Mike Ross, 2 Rory Best (captain) 1 Jack McGrath
Substitutes: 16 Sean Cronin, 17 Finlay Bealham, 18 Tadhg Furlong, 19 Ultan Dillane, 20 Rhys Ruddock, 21 Eoin Reddan, 22 Ian Madigan, 23 Matt Healy