Springboks make 5 changes for England

2014-11-12 14:20

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Rugby World Cup winners JP Pietersen and Schalk Burger will start Saturday’s second test in the Castle Lager Outgoing Tour against England at Twickenham.

The five changes to the team are straight swaps between the starting line-up as the Springbok match-23 is retained from last weekend.

Along with Pietersen and Burger, Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has handed starts to hooker Adriaan Strauss and the halfback pair of Cobus Reinach and Pat Lambie.

Cornal Hendricks, Handre Pollard, Francois Hougaard, Teboho Mohoje and Bismarck du Plessis will start on the bench.

“We’ve accepted our performance against Ireland last weekend was not up to scratch and everyone in the touring squad has put up their hands and dug deep this week,” Meyer said today.

“We’ve really worked hard at fixing the mistakes we made and the challenge is now to put that into action on Saturday.”

Meyer said the changes were not a knee-jerk reaction following the result in Dublin, but rather in line with rotational changes that he had in mind before the start of the tour.

Strauss, Lambie and Pietersen all started in the Springboks’ last Test at Twickenham, two years ago, while Saturday’s match will be Reinach’s first in the starting team.

“Pat started at Twickenham for us two years ago and did very well,” Meyer said.

“He’s playing well at the moment and I wanted to give him the opportunity to start. Pat is tactically very astute and even though he’s still pretty young, he’s got a lot of experience.”

Meyer said he expected the replacements would raise the intensity with the likes of Mohoje, Hougaard, Hendricks and Pollard providing cover.

South Africa team: Willie le Roux, JP Pietersen, Jan Serfontein, Jean de Villiers (captain), Bryan Habana, Pat Lambie, Cobus Reinach, Duane Vermeulen, Schalk Burger, Marcell Coetzee, Victor Matfield, Eben Etzebeth, Jannie du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Tendai Mtawarira.

Replacements: Bismarck du Plessis, Trevor Nyakane, Coenie Oosthuizen, Bakkies Botha, Teboho “Oupa” Mohoje, Francois Hougaard, Handre Pollard, Cornal Hendricks.

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