Tendai Mtawarira, Bismarck du Plessis, Willie le Roux, Cornal Hendricks and Lwazi Mvovo are back in the Springbok starting line-up for Saturday’s Test against Wales at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
The changes in the back three were required because Johan Goosen, Bryan Habana and JP Pietersen were not available this week, while the two changes to the front row were rotational.
Adriaan Strauss, who started at hooker in the victories over England and Italy, moved to the bench, where he would be joined by Trevor Nyakane and Damian de Allende in the only other changes to the match-23.
“This tour has been a good test of our depth and we’re looking forward to see what the team can do on Saturday,” said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.
“We will face a fired-up Welsh side this weekend. They played very well against New Zealand and it will be a tough end to our season, but we want to finish on a high and the focus this week has been on ensuring we keep on building on what we’ve done thus far this year.
“All the players coming into the team have been part of our squad for most of the season. They know our plans and structures and now it’s about execution on Saturday.”
Injuries and the non-availability of overseas-based players for matches outside the Test window have meant that only three players, Le Roux, Du Plessis and Duane Vermeulen, have played in all 12 Tests for the Springboks in 2014.
In 2013, a total of 10 players featured in each of the 12 Tests.
Le Roux is the only player who has played in every Springbok encounter over the last two seasons, while Du Plessis has missed only one match.
Scrumhalf Rudy Paige picked up a knee injury during training yesterday which will rule him out of action for approximately three to four weeks.
A replacement for Paige in the Springboks’ touring squad would be named at a later stage.
The Springbok team: Willie le Roux, Cornal Hendricks, Jan Serfontein, Jean de Villiers (captain), Lwazi Mvovo, Pat Lambie, Cobus Reinach, Duane Vermeulen, Teboho “Oupa” Mohoje, Marcell Coetzee, Victor Matfield, Eben Etzebeth, Coenie Oosthuizen, Bismarck du Plessis, Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: Adriaan Strauss, Trevor Nyakane, Julian Redelinghuys, Lood de Jager, Nizaam Carr, Francois Hougaard, Handré Pollard, Damian de Allende.