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Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Springboks opt for 7/1 split with Eben Etzebeth fit to start – The Irish Times

South African head coach Jacques Nienaber has made one change from the side that beat Scotland 18-3 in their opening match of the World Cup with Bongi Mbonambi replacing the injured Malcolm Marx at hooker. The Springboks beat Romania 76-0 in their most recent outing but made 14 alterations for that game.

Eben Etzebeth has recovered from the shoulder injury he sustained in the win over Scotland that forced him off in the first half. Jean Kleyn, who played for Ireland at the World Cup in Japan four years ago, is named among the replacements.

The Springboks have opted for a 7/1 split on the bench, reprising the historic set-up for the recent victory over New Zealand at Twickenham. A late injury to fullback Willie Le Roux for that warm-up match saw him replaced by Kwagga Smith, an alteration that meant South African had seven forwards and just one back.

Scrumhalf Cobus Reinach, who can play on the wing as well, is the only back named for Saturday night’s Pool B clash with Ireland.

More to follow

SOUTH AFRICA: Damian Willemse; Kurt-Lee Arendse, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Cheslin Kolbe; Manie Libbok, Faf de Klerk; Steven Kitshoff, Bongi Mbonambi, Frans Malherbe; Eben Etzebeth, Franco Mostert; Siya Kolisi (Capt), Pieter-Steph du Toit, Jasper Wiese.

Replacements: Deon Fourie, Ox Nche, Trevor Nyakane, RG Snyman, Jean Kleyn, Marco van Staden, Kwagga Smith, Cobus Reinach.

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