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By Sports Reporter


Gelant, De Klerk back in Bok team, Steyn on bench for Wallabies clash

Ox Nche, Joseph Dweba and Duane Vermeulen will also start again in the Rugby Championship match in Adelaide.

Warrick Gelant has been handed the Springbok No 14 jersey for Saturday’s Rugby Championship match against Australia in Adelaide, while Faf de Klerk is also back in the starting team.

There is also place in the matchday squad for Frans Steyn after Bok coach Jacques Nienaber decided to go into the match with a five-three forwards to backs bench split.

The three backs on the bench this weekend will be Jaden Hendrikse, Elton Jantjies and Steyn.

Willie le Roux and Jasper Wiese are not in the match-23 this weekend, which means Duane Vermeulen has retained his place at No 8.

ALSO READ: Five selection challenges facing Boks in Australia

“This is a very important clash for us to set the tone for our Rugby Championship tour and we feel that continuity in selection is important to build momentum in our campaign,” said Nienaber.

“Warrick was in good form for the Stormers earlier this season and he has been working hard at training, so we thought it would be good to give him a run on the wing. He also combined well with Damian Willemse in the United Rugby Championship, so we are excited to see what they offer us in the match.

“Faf, meanwhile, is back from concussion and his experience will be important in this game.

“We also feel it is important to give the likes of Ox (Nche), Joseph (Dweba) and Duane (Vermeulen) another opportunity to further build combinations and give them valuable game time as we build toward the Rugby World Cup next year.”

Of the decision to switch from a six-two to a five-three split on the bench, Nienaber said: “We looked at what Australia will bring to the game, and that combined with our need to give Elton and Frans Steyn some vital game time, prompted us to select five forwards and three backs on the bench.

“With Franco (Mostert) and Kwagga (Smith) on the bench, we will have cover at lock and looseforward, while Frans Steyn’s versatility will also be handy as he can cover centre and fullback. These changes obviously mean that Willie, Jasper and Herschel lose out, but we know what we have in them and what they bring to the team.”

Springbok team

Damian Willemse, Warrick Gelant, Lukhanyo Am, Damian de Allende, Makazole Mapimpi, Handre Pollard, Faf de Klerk, Duane Vermeulen, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Siya Kolisi (capt), Lood de Jager, Eben Etzebeth, Frans Malherbe, Joseph Dweba, Ox Nche. Bench: Malcolm Marx, Steven Kitshoff, Vincent Koch, Franco Mostert, Kwagga Smith, Jaden Hendrikse, Elton Jantjies, Frans Steyn

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