Scotland v South Africa: three changes to Springbok side for Murrayfield clash

Franco Mostert and Elton Jantjies will pick up their 50th caps on Saturday, while Frans Steyn will become the longest serving Springbok in history

Elton Jantjies comes in to play stand-off against Scotland on Saturday. Image: © Craig Watson -
Elton Jantjies comes in to play stand-off against Scotland on Saturday. Image: © Craig Watson -

JACQUES NIENABER had made three changes in total – one of them injury-enforced – to the South Africa side which started last Saturday’s victory over Wales, ahead of this coming weekend’s clash against Scotland at Murrayfield.

Franco Mostert comes in for his 50th Test cap at lock and Elton Jantjies comes in at fly-half, with both Lood de Jager and Handré Pollard moving to the replacements bench. Meanwhile, Willie Le Roux takes over from the concussed Damian Willemse at full-back.

Winger Jesse Kriel will also earn their 50th Test cap, while Frans Steyn is in line to set a new South African record for the longest international rugby career off the bench, taking over from Victor Matfield. It will be 15 years on Thursday since he made his Springbok debut.

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“Scotland will be a force to be reckoned with at Murrayfield, so it was important for us to maintain continuity within our squad, while at the same time celebrating Jesse and Franco’s 50th caps and giving Elton a chance to start,” said head coach Nienaber.

“Elton has been training very well since the squad assembled before the Castle Lager Lions Series and he’s performed well every time he earned a run, so we thought it was the right time to hand him a start.

“It will be a special day for Jesse and Franco as they run out for their 50th Tests at Murrayfield. They are both fantastic servants of the game and their high work ethic and true team attitude make them vital members of our squad, and we are all delighted to see them achieve this feat.”


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Turning his attention to Steyn, Nienaber said: “Playing international rugby for 15 years is an extraordinary achievement and what makes this feat even more remarkable is that Frans continues to show his class despite being at the twilight of his career.

“His influence is equally valuable off the field and it is fantastic to have a player of his calibre guide the young players in the squad.

“Scotland have a quality team with a number of experienced players and a few British & Irish Lions players, so we are under no illusions about the challenge ahead,” he added.

“They are a physical side with solid set pieces, but they also have the skills to run the ball, so we’ll have to be accurate on attack and defence.

“We laid a good foundation for the tour in Cardiff last week, and we know what areas we would like to improve on. We created opportunities to score points last week, but we didn’t convert some of them, and we also conceded several penalties, so we need to step up our discipline as well.

“The scrums will of course be a key battle with former Springbok scrum coach Pieter de Villiers now serving that role for Scotland, but that is an area of the game we pride ourselves on too, so we need to be physical and accurate up front.”

Angus Gardner (Australia) has been appointed the match referee and he will be assisted by Wayne Barnes (England) and Craig Evans (Wales), with Brett Cronan (Australia) on TMO duty.

South Africa (v Scotland at the Murrayfield, Saturday 13th November @ 1pm British time): W le Roux; J Kriel, L Am, D de Allende, M Mapimpi; E Jantjies, H Jantjies; O Nché, B Mbonambi, T Nyakane, E Etzebeth, F Mostert, S Kolisi, K Smith, D Vermeulen. Replacements: M Marx, S Kitshoff, V Koch, L de Jager, J Wiese, C Reinach, H Pollard, F Steyn.

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About David Barnes 4002 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

1 Comment

  1. Looking like SA recognise the threat from Scotland and responding accordingly.

    Should be a great match.

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