SOUTH Africa Under-20 coach Dawie Theron has named his team to take on England in their final Pool C match at the 2011 IRB Junior World Championships, at the Stadio Plebsicito in Padova on Saturday.
England and South Africa have met twice in the semifinals of the IRB Junior World Championships, as well as in last year’s play-off match for bronze in Argentina.
The Baby Boks lost both semifinal matches against the English, but secured the bronze medal in Rosario when they beat England last year.
Lions star Jaco Taute, who recently joined the SA Under-20 squad as an injury replacement for Craig Barry, has been selected at fullback in one of five changes made to the starting line up from the team that beat Ireland 42-26 in Treviso on Tuesday.
(The Baby Boks defeated Scotland 33-0 in their opening match played in Padova on June 10.)
Theron has recalled scrumhalf Pieter Rademan to the starting XV in place of Lohan Jacobs. Rademan, a former SA Schools captain, will partner flyhalf Johan Goosen.
Flank Siya Kolisi will start his second match of the tournament and teams up with Varsity Cup stars Nizaam Carr and Arno Botha as the loose trio. Hooker Bongi Mbonambi returns to the starting team in place of Michael van Vuuren as does prop Juan Schoeman, who takes over at loosehead from Stephan Kotze.
Looking ahead to Saturday, coach Theron said: “We are playing England for the top honours in our Pool, and so there’s naturally going to be plenty of tension and excitement building up to this fixture which is great.-iafrica.com
“We’ve managed to achieve maximum points without playing too much rugby during our matches against Ireland and Scotland, and England also earned bonus point victories against both those sides in the tournament.”
Speaking about the England team, itself, the SA Under-20 boss added: “They’ve got skilful players across the park and will test us for 80 minutes.
“We are going to have to be sharp in our execution and our discipline will have to be right up there. We’ve defended well by only leaking two tries, and our structures will have to once again be up for the challenge of containing a team who have not been afraid to play an expansive game.
“We are pretty much expecting them to continue that trend on Saturday, which is why we’ll have to defend well, and execute our own opportunities which comes our way. It’s a guaranteed semifinal ticket for winners, so we hope to the successful team on the evening.”
South Africa: 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Bradley Moolman, 12 François Venter, 11 Wandile Mjekevu, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Pieter Rademan, 8 Arno Botha (captain), 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Nizaam Carr, 5 Eben Etzebeth, 4 Ruan Venter, 3 John Roy Jenkinson, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Juan Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Michael van Vuuren, 17 Nic Schonert, 18 Jean Cook, 19 Cornell du Preez, 20 Lohan Jacobs, 21 John Welthagen, 22 Paul Jordaan.
Date: Saturday, June 18
Venue: Stadio Plebsicito in Padova
Kick-off: 8.10pm (SA time, live on SuperSport One)
Referee: John Lacey (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Mathieu Raynal (France), Carlo Damasco (Italy)