Etzebeth back with the Springboks against England

South Africa made six changes to their squad for their final game of the Autumn Series against England on Saturday at Twickenham, partly because the game is being played outside the international window and that several players had to join their clubs. Eben Etzebeth returns to the starting XV after last weekend’s 63-21 win over Italy. He will be partnered with his former teammate Marvin Orie, while Jese Kriel will return as second center alongside Damian de Allende.

Makazole Mapimpi has been selected in place of Cheslin Kolbe, who is unavailable, and the rest of the back trio includes winger Kurt-Lee Arendse and Willie le Roux at full-back. Fly-half Damian Willemse and scrum-half Faf de Klerk will once again form the backbone of the Boks. Evan Roos will start at number 8, Jasper Wiese not being available, and will have Franco Mostert and captain Siya Kolisi as flankers.

The front row includes props Frans Malherbe and Ox Nche, as well as hooker Bongi Mbonambi. Besides Kolbe and Wiese, the other players unavailable for selection are center Andre Esterhuizen, scrum-half Cobus Reinach and prop Vincent Koch, while flanker Pieter-Steph du Toit is suspended after his red card for a charge to the face on Jonathan Danty.

“Satisfied with the depth of the workforce that we have put in place”

With this test falling outside of the international window, we knew we had to make changes to the squad, but we’re happy with the squad depth we’ve built into the extended squad over the past few months, and it is paying off for us this week. All players on this team have played matchessaid coach Jacques Nienaber in a South African Rugby press release. He is delighted to have this great challenge for his team against that of Eddie Jones.

England will approach this match with the same mindset as us: finish the season on a high after a difficult campaign in November, and build momentum for the World Cup Nienaber said. “We expect the English to pass on everything they have to us. They’re a well-balanced team, with strong forwards and enthusiastic backs, and they’re well trained, so we know it’s going to be an epic encounter.»

South Africa line-up:

15 – Willie le Roux, 14 – Kurt-Lee Arendse, 13 – Jesse Kriel, 12 – Damian de Allende, 11 – Makazole Mapimpi, 10 – Damian Willemse, 9 – Faf de Klerk, 8 – Evan Roos, 7 – Franco Mostert, 6 – Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 – Marvin Orie, 4 – Eben Etzebeth, 3 – Frans Malherbe, 2 – Bongi Mbonambi, 1 – Ox Nche
Replacements: 16 – Malcolm Marx, 17 – Steven Kitshoff, 18 – Thomas du Toit, 19 – Marco van Staden, 20 – Kwagga Smith, 21 – Jaden Hendrikse, 22 – Manie Libbok, 23 – Canan Moodie


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