Butch James (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Former Springbok flyhalf Butch James has picked the team he feels should run out in South Africa’s Rugby World Cup clash against Scotland in Newcastle on Saturday.
In a video posted to his Twitter page, the 2007 World Cup winner said he would make a few changes to the team which beat Samoa 46-6 in Birmingham last weekend.
James opted for Pat Lambie in place of Willie le Roux at fullback, while he backed Jesse Kriel to do the job in midfield, replacing injured skipper Jean de Villiers.
“I would go with Pat Lambie at fullback, but I’ve got a feeling the coach will stick with Willie - he had a good game (against Samoa) - but for me I would try get Pat in there as early as possible, just to build up for the playoffs.”
In case of Damian de Allende not recovering from a knee injury, James is not against the idea of coach Heyneke Meyer picking Handre Pollard at inside centre.
"There might even be a chance that Heyneke moves Handre to 12 instead of rushing Jan Serfontein straight into starting."
In such a scenario, Lambie would then start at flyhalf.
Up front, James would pick Frans Malherbe ahead of Jannie du Plessis at tighthead prop.
Du Plessis gave away a few penalties against the Samoans and appeared to struggle at scrum time, before being replaced by Malherbe in the 54th minute.
James has also called for the return of Bismarck du Plessis at hooker in place of Adriaan Strauss.
When probed by Sport24 who he’d pick as captain in the absence of De Villiers, James opted for lock Victor Matfield.
However, it has since been revealed that Matfield is struggling with a hamstring niggle, which could see him miss Saturday's match.
In that case, either Schalk Burger, Fourie du Preez, Duane Vermeulen or Francois Louw will lead the team.
Meyer will name his team at 18:00 (SA time) on Wednesday.
Saturday’s clash at St James’ Park - the home of English football side Newcastle United - is scheduled for 17:45 (SA time).
Butch James’ Springbok team for Scotland clash:
15 Pat Lambie, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Fourie du Preez, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Schalk Burger, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Victor Matfield (captain), 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira