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Springboks Name Exciting Squad For Wales Clash

  • June 18, 2024
  • 3 min read
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Springboks Name Exciting Squad For Wales Clash

Vincent Koch is set to earn his 50th Test cap on Saturday when the Springboks take on Wales at Twickenham.

This will be their first international since lifting the Webb Ellis Cup in France last year. Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus has named an exciting matchday 23 with a good balance of youth and experience, featuring four uncapped players.

Edwill van der Merwe (wing) and Jordan Hendrikse (flyhalf) are the two uncapped players starting in the well-balanced team. Ben-Jason Dixon (lock) and Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu (utility back) will also make their debuts on the replacements bench.

Ten players in the matchday squad featured in the 2023 Rugby World Cup final, while 16 were part of the wider World Cup squad. Notably, experienced hooker Malcolm Marx returns after a knee injury sidelined him from the tournament after the opening match.

A total of 30 players will travel to London, with those not making the matchday squad gaining valuable exposure to the Test environment. These players include World Cup winners Manie Libbok (flyhalf) and RG Snyman (lock).

Five players from the starting team – Eben Etzebeth, Franco Mostert, Pieter-Steph du Toit (captain), Faf de Klerk, and Jesse Kriel (vice-captain) – reprise their roles from the 2023 World Cup final victory over the All Blacks.

Erasmus opted for a forwards-heavy bench with five forwards and three backs. Four of the replacements are World Cup winners: Bongi Mbonambi, Frans Malherbe, Grant Williams, and Damian de Allende.

Erasmus praises uncapped players and returning veterans

Erasmus expressed his excitement about the new faces and the opportunity for experienced players to guide them. He also highlighted the importance of exposing fringe players to the Test environment in preparation for the 2027 World Cup.

Du Toit handed captaincy reins

Erasmus explained the decision to hand the captaincy to Pieter-Steph du Toit, citing his leadership qualities and the added motivation of facing Wales again after their 2018 loss.

Koch set for 50th Test cap

Erasmus lauded Vincent Koch for reaching the milestone of 50 Test caps and highlighted his consistent performances for the Boks.

Building squad depth for the future

Erasmus concluded by emphasizing the importance of building squad depth for future success. He believes this camp and upcoming Tests will be crucial in achieving that goal.

Springbok Starting XI to face Wales - 22 June - 2024 @ 15h00

Springbok Team to Face Wales at Twickenham:

Starters:

  • 15 Aphelele Fassi (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 3 caps, 10 points (2 tries)
  • 14 Edwill van der Merwe (Emirates Lions) – Uncapped
  • 13 Jesse Kriel (Canon Eagles) – 68 caps, 75 points (15 tries)
  • 12 Andre Esterhuizen (Harlequins) – 16 caps, 0 points
  • 11 Makazole Mapimpi (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 41 caps, 130 points (26 tries)
  • 10 Jordan Hendrikse (Emirates Lions) – Uncapped
  • 9 Faf de Klerk (Canon Eagles) – 55 caps, 50 points (5 tries, 5 conversions, 5 penalty goals)
  • 8 Evan Roos (DHL Stormers) – 5 caps, 0 points
  • 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit (Captain – Toyota Verblitz) – 77 caps, 40 points (8 tries)
  • 6 Kwagga Smith (Shizuoka Blue Revs) – 40 caps, 35 points (7 tries)
  • 5 Franco Mostert (Honda Heat, Japan) – 73 caps, 15 points (3 tries)
  • 4 Eben Etzebeth (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 119 caps, 30 points (6 tries)
  • 3 Vincent Koch (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 49 caps, 5 points (1 try)
  • 2 Malcolm Marx (Kubota Spears) – 64 caps, 85 points (17 tries)
  • 1 Ox Nche (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 27 caps, 0 points

Replacements:

  • 16 Bongi Mbonambi (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 68 caps, 65 points (13 tries)
  • 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 1 cap, 0 points
  • 18 Frans Malherbe (DHL Stormers) – 69 caps, 5 points (1 try)
  • 19 Salmaan Moerat (DHL Stormers) – 3 caps, 0 points
  • 20 Ben-Jason Dixon (DHL Stormers) – Uncapped
  • 21 Grant Williams (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 8 caps, 10 points (2 tries)
  • 22 Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu (DHL Stormers) – Uncapped
  • 23 Damian de Allende (Wild Knights) – 78 caps, 55 points (11 tries)
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