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Springbok team announced to face All Blacks for decider

Tendai Mtawarira Beast

Two changes to the Bok side with go head-to-head with the All Blacks for one the most anticipated encounters of the Rugby Championship.

Tendai Mtawarira Beast

Heyneke Meyer has selected his team that will take on the All Blacks at Ellis Park on Saturday for the Rugby Championship decider.

The team sees Bismark du Plessis come back into the starting lineup after playing off the bench for the game against the Wallabies last week.

He is joined once again by Tendai Mtawarira, who plays his 50th match for the Springboks on Saturday.

“What a wonderful achievement for Beast,” said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.

“He is someone who doesn’t speak a lot, but you know he always gives everything he has for the Springbok jersey. It’s always good to see hard work and dedication pay off like this.”

At the back, JJ Engelbrecht is bracketed at outside centre with Jan Serfontein, while Juan de Jongh will come onto the bench if needed.

“We will give JJ all the time he needs to fully recover from his quad muscle injury, but if he can’t make it, Jan will start with Juan on the bench,” explained Meyer.

Franco van der Merwe has also been added to the team after Flip van der Merwe’s banning following his dangerous tackle to Joe Tomane in last week’s game.

“Juandré will slot in without any difficulty as he’s been part of the squad since day one and I’m very pleased for Franco, who has been training with us for more than a year already.

“Franco’s attitude since day one has been fantastic, he’s waited patiently and always stayed positive, which is what we as a team stand for. On Saturday, he could make his debut against New Zealand in front of his home crowd at Ellis Park on Saturday.”

Springboks: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Willie le Roux, 13 JJ Engelbrecht/Jan Serfontein, 12 Jean de Villiers (c), 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Fourie du Preez, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Subs: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Gurthrö Steenkamp, 18 Coenie Oosthuizen, 19 Franco van der Merwe, 20 Siya Kolisi, 21 Ruan Pienaar, 22 Pat Lambie, 23 Jan Serfontein/Juan de Jongh.

Image source: Gallo Images
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