Boks boast second most caps at RWC

2015-09-02 15:52
Bismarck du Plessis and Victor Matfield (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Heyneke Meyer's Springbok squad will have the second-most Test caps at this year's Rugby World Cup in England and Wales.

According to the NZ Herald website, analysis of all 20 of the World Cup squads has revealed that defending champions and the world's No 1 side, the All Blacks, have by far the most experience, with the squad combining for 1 484 Test caps - 187 more than the next best side - South Africa.

Led by Richie McCaw (142 caps), Keven Mealamu (126), Tony Woodcock (115) and Dan Carter (106), the defending champions have an added 345 Test caps from their triumph in 2011, where they came into the tournament with the second most caps behind the Boks.

Victor Matfield (123), Bryan Habana (110) and Jean de Villiers (107) are the three Springbok centurions, with Ruan Pienaar next best on 84.

Eight sides have more than 1 000 combined Test caps, with South Africa in second and Australia in fourth, surprisingly separated by Georgia, who mass 1 253 Test caps among their 31-strong squad.

Surprisingly light on experience are hosts England, who are 14th on the list with just 761 Test caps, opting for a largely youthful squad, while Samoa "boast" the fewest caps with 483.

Most experienced RWC squads:

1. New Zealand 1 484 caps
2. South Africa 1 297
3. Georgia 1 253
4. Australia 1 243
5. Italy 1 153
6. Romania 1 151
7. Ireland 1 024
8. Wales 1 013
9. Japan 984
10. France 979
11. Scotland 901
12. Argentina 845
13. Uruguay 833
14. England 761
15. Canada 673
16. Fiji 592
17. USA 552
18. Namibia 512
19. Tonga 501
20. Samoa 483

When it comes to having a core of players with 50 caps or more, Australia lead the way with a large chunk of their predicted starting XV having plenty of top-level experience.

Squads with players with 50 caps or more:

1. Australia 13
2. South Africa 11
3. Romania 11
4. New Zealand 10
5. Ireland 9
6. Wales 8
7. Italy 8
8. Georgia 6
9. France 6
10. Argentina 5
11. Japan 4
12. Scotland 4
13. England 3

The 2015 World Cup starts on Friday, September 18.

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