Rugby World Cup 2019: Springboks name second-string side for Wallabies test

Veteran lock Eben Etzebeth will lead a second-string Springboks team in their Rugby Championship test against the Wallabies in Johannesburg on Sunday (NZT). 

Due to travel pressure, the Springboks have named a weakened team for the Ellis Park match, with many of their stars instead flying out to New Zealand to prepare for the All Blacks next weekend.

Springboks coach Rassie Erasmus says, as well as the testing schedule, the selection is about giving match time to as many players as possible before the World Cup in September and November.    

"We have planned to mix things up in the first two tests of the season, in order to give game time to as many of the players in our wider squad," Erasmus said.

"We believe this is the right combination to face a very good and competitive Australian side.    

"Australia have prepared very well for this match and they have spent two weeks at altitude to acclimatise to the Highveld, so we are in for a great contest."    

Etzebeth will cover for injured captain Siya Kolisi, while back-rower Rynhardt Elstadt, who plays for Toulouse, and halfback Herschel Jantjies (Stormers) will make their test debuts.

Prop Lizo Gqoboka (Bulls) is also set to earn his debut off the bench.

Jantjies will play alongside Elton Jantjies in a new-look halves combination, while exciting Bulls fullback Warrick Gelant forms a dangerous back three with Sharks wingers S'busiso Nkosi and Makazole Mapimpi.

Andre Esterhuizen pairs up with Jesse Kriel in the midfield, with veteran Francois Steyn, who has been playing with French club Montpellier, on the bench.

Meanwhile, the Wallabies will likely field a second-string side, with six players sent home through injury, personal circumstances or to play club rugby.

Springboks: 1-Tendai Mtawarira, 2-Bongi Mbonambi, 3-Trevor Nyakane, 4-Eben Etzebeth (c), 5-Lood de Jager, 6-Rynhardt Elstadt, 7-Pieter-Steph du Toit, 8-Francois Louw, 9-Herschel Jantjies, 10-Elton Jantjies, 11-Makazole Mapimpi, 12-Andre Esterhuizen, 13-Jesse Kriel, 14-S'busiso Nkosi, 15-Warrick Gelant

Reserves: 16-Schalk Brits, 17-Lizo Gqoboka, 18-Vincent Koch, 19-Marvin Orie, 20-Marcell Coetzee, 21-Cobus Reinach, 22-Francois Steyn, 23-Dillyn Leyds  


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