Vermeulen boost but Springboks suffer Kolbe blow

Image copyright: Getty Images

Rugby Championship

South Africa vs Australia 

Cbus Super Stadium 
Brisbane, Gold Coast, Australia 
Sunday, 12 September 
Kick-off is at 12:05 
Springboks head coach Jacques Nienaber has named his squad for Sunday's Rugby Championship match against Australia at Cbus Super Stadium. 
The match will be South Africa's first of four on Australia's Gold Coast with back-to-back matches against Australia to be followed by two games against New Zealand. 

Jacques Nienaber Image copyright: Getty Images

South Africa currently sit second on the log standings with nine points, a point behind the All Blacks after two rounds of fixtures. The World Champions beat Argentina in successive matches (32-12 and 29-10) hosted at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Gqeberha last month.
Australia, like Argentina, are pointless after two matches. The Wallabies lost 57-22 to the All Blacks at Eden Park before a 38-21 defeat to the same opponents in Perth last weekend. 
Nienaber made 13 changes to his matchday squad for this weekend's match - seven in the starting line-up and a further six on the replacements bench. 
Duane Vermeulen will make his first appearance for the Springboks since the 2019 Rugby World Cup final in Japan while Faf de Klerk, Herschel Jantjies and Marco van Staden are also back from injury. 
Unfortunately for the Springboks, Cheslin Kolbe will play no part in Sunday's match after he picked up a knock in training. 

Cheslin Kolbe
Image copyright: Getty Images
“We have been following the progress of the injured players on a daily basis, so we knew that we would be in a position to select most of them for this match,” said Nienaber.

“Duane has played an active role off the field in our team meetings and with the analysis of the opposition, and he has also provided guidance at training. He returned to full training when we arrived in Australia, so he has been in the thick of things for a while now.

“Duane, Faf and Herschel are Rugby World Cup winners, and so is Eben [Etzebeth], who is back after we rotated him to manage his workload, while Marco has made a strong impact on the field this season as well, so we are pleased to have them back in the fold.

“Australia pose a strong threat with their running rugby and they like to keep the ball in play. They will also be playing in front of a charged-up home crowd, so it will be good to have these experienced players back as they know what it takes to perform in big matches.

“Unfortunately, we lost Cheslin to injury, but we are fortunate to have Sbu [Nkosi] who steps in. He’s been working hard at training and he is eager to get back on the field," he added. 

Springbok team to face Australia: 

15 – Willie le Roux (Toyota Verblitz) – 66 caps, 60 pts (12t)
14 – Sbu Nkosi (Cell C Sharks) – 12 caps, 40 pts (8t)
13 – Lukhanyo Am (Cell C Sharks) – 19 caps, 20 pts (4t)
12 – Damian de Allende (Munster) – 51 caps, 30 pts (6t)
11 – Makazole Mapimpi (Cell C Sharks) – 18 caps, 80 pts (16t)
10 – Handré Pollard (vice-captain, Montpellier) – 53 caps, 521 pts (6t, 82c, 105p, 4d)
9 – Faf de Klerk (Sale Sharks) – 32 caps, 25 pts (5t)
8 – Duane Vermeulen (Vodacom Bulls) – 53 caps, 15 pts (3t)
7 – Franco Mostert (Honda Heat) – 44 caps, 5pts (1t)
6 – Siya Kolisi (captain, Cell C Sharks) – 56 caps, 30 pts (6t)
5 – Lood de Jager (Sale Sharks) – 50 caps, 25 pts (5t)
4 – Eben Etzebeth (Toulon) – 90 caps, 15 pts (3t)
3 – Frans Malherbe (DHL Stormers) – 43 caps, 5pts (1t)
2 – Bongi Mbonambi (DHL Stormers) – 41 caps, 40 pts (8t)
1 – Steven Kitshoff (DHL Stormers) – 52 caps, 5pts (1t)


16 – Malcolm Marx (Kubota Spears) – 39 caps, 35 pts (7t)
17 – Ox Nché (Cell C Sharks) – 4 caps, 0 pts
18 – Vincent Koch (Saracens) – 24 caps, 0 pts
19 – Marco van Staden (Leicester Tigers) – 6 caps, 0 pts
20 – Kwagga Smith (Yamaha Júbilo) – 12 caps, 5 pts (1t)
21 – Jasper Wiese (Leicester Tigers) – 5 caps, 0 pts
22 – Herschel Jantjies (DHL Stormers) – 14 caps, 25 pts (5t)
23 – Damian Willemse (DHL Stormers) – 12 caps, 5pts (1t)
South Africa vs Australia head-to-head statistics:
Matches played: 88
South Africa wins: 48
Australia wins: 37
Draws: 3 

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Published: 09/09/2021