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Starting berth for Kwagga Smith, as Springbok squad announced

The Springboks have officially announced that local rugby hero Kwagga Smith will start as blindside flanker in their test match against Wales this weekend.

In what will be South Africa’s first match since the country’s historic World Cup-winning campaign, Kwagga will partner surprise captain Pieter-Steph du Toit on the flank.

This will be du Toit’s second test as leader of the boys in green and gold, with the Toyota Verblitz forward surely hoping to avoid a repeat of his previous outing as skipper, a 2018 test against Wales, where Warren Gatland’s men narrowly eked out a 22–20 victory.

Rassie Erasmus stated that Du Toit’s appointment as captain was “well deserved, but also personal,” citing the previous loss against the Welsh side as a motivating factor in his decision.

There are four uncapped players in the squad, with Jordan Hendrikse at flyhalf and Edwill van der Merwe on the right wing included in the starting line-up. Both of whom have had fantastic seasons with the Lions and will be hoping to cement their places in the Springboks’ regular rotation.

Stormers duo Ben-Jason Dixon and versatile back Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu, will be hoping to make a cameo from the bench for their first caps.

Tighthead prop Vincent Koch will be marking his name down in the history books, as the Sharks star is set to make his 50th appearance for his nation this Saturday.

The match is set to kick off at 15:00 local time on Saturday, with London’s Twickenham Stadium set to play host to the clash of rugby titans. And despite our opposition set to don their traditional red, the only Rooies we will be focused on is HTS Middelburg alumni Kwagga Smith.

You can find the starting line-ups of both sides below:

South Africa
15 – Aphelele Fassi, 14 – Edwill van der Merwe (uncapped), 13 – Jesse Kriel, 12 – Andre Esterhuizen, 11 – Makazole Mapimpi, 10 – Jordan Hendrikse (uncapped), 9 – Faf de Klerk, 8 – Evan Roos, 7 – Pieter-Steph du Toit (captain), 6 – Kwagga Smith (hero), 5 – Franco Mostert, 4 – Eben Etzebeth, 3 –Vincent Koch (50th cap), 2 – Malcolm Marx, 1 – Ox Nche.
Substitutes: 16 – Bongi Mbonambi, 17 – Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 – Frans Malherbe, 19 – Salmaan Moerat, 20 – Ben-Jason Dixon (uncapped), 21 – Grant Williams, 22 – Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu (uncapped), 23 – Damian de Allende.

Wales
15 – Cameron Winnett, 14 – Liam Williams, 13 – Owen Watkin, 12 – Mason Grady, 11 – Rio Dyer, 10 – Sam Costelow, 9 – Ellis Bevan (uncapped), 8 – Aaron Wainwright, 7 – James Botham, 6 – Taine Plumtree, 5 – Matthew Screech, 4 – Ben Carter, 3 – Henry Thomas, 2 – Dewi Lake (captain), 1 – Gareth Thomas
Substitutes: 16 – Evan Lloyd, 17 – Kemsley Mathias, 18 – Keiron Keiron Assiratti, 19 – James Ratti (uncapped), 20 – Mackenzie Martin, 21 – Gareth Davies, 22 – Eddie James (uncapped), 23 – Jacob Beetham (uncapped).

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