Tri Nations: Springboks resist urge to ring the changes

By Sam Rogers
Richard KahuiRichard Kahui is struggling with a shoulder injury (Photo: Kimie Abu Bakar)

Richard Kahui

Springboks coach Peter de Villiers has resisted making wholesale changes to his team ahead of their crunch second Tri Nations match this Saturday.

De Villiers’ side lost emphatically to a clinical All Blacks side in their first outing but only two personnel changes have been made and both are enforced, not tactical.

Danie Rossouw comes in for his 50th cap replacing the suspended Bakkies Botha, while CJ van der Linde replaces injured prop Jannie du Plessis.

De Villiers will be hoping the show of faith on his part will go some way towards inspiring an improved performance this weekend.

“I trust this bunch of people,” said de Villiers. “They weren’t on song on Saturday but they weren’t bad. It’s just that the All Blacks were very good.”

“These boys are much better than what we showcased on Saturday and it’s time for them to stand up.”

Elsewhere, Graham Henry has delayed the naming of his All Blacks side due to the injury concerns of Jimmy Cowan and Joe Rokocoko.

Henry has called up Crusaders wing Zac Guildford and Blues scrum-half Alby Mathewson as cover for the pair, in addition to centre Richard Kahui, who is struggling with a shoulder injury.

The All Blacks will be looking to build on their victory last weekend, while the Springboks will be aiming to get their title defence back on track.

South Africa squad to face New Zealand in Wellington on Saturday:

Backs: Z Kirchner (Bulls); J de Villiers (Western Province), J Fourie (Stormers), W Olivier (Bulls), B Habana (Stormers); M Steyn (Bulls), R Januarie (Stormers);

Forwards: G Steenkamp (Bulls), J Smit (Sharks, capt), CJ van der Linde (Cheetahs), D Rossouw (Bulls), V Matfield (Bulls), S Burger (Stormers), F Louw (Stormers), P Spies (Bulls)

Replacements: C Ralepelle (Bulls), BJ Botha (Ulster), A Bekker (Stormers), R Kankowski (Sharks), R Pienaar (Sharks), B James (Bath), G Aplon (Stormers)

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