PORT ELIZABETH, South Africa (Reuters) – South Africa will hand loose forward Jacques Potgieter his debut as coach Heyneke Meyer made three changes to his starting side named on Wednesday to face England in the third and final test.
The Springboks hold an unassailable 2-0 series lead ahead of the match in Port Elizabeth on Saturday but have been forced to bring in fullback Gio Aplon, inside centre Wynand Olivier, who is promoted from the bench, and Potgieter.
Making way for the trio are fullback Patrick Lambie (ankle), and flanker Willem Alberts (knee), who were both injured in the second test, while centre Frans Steyn will skip the contest because it clashes with his wedding.
Meyer also made two changes to his replacements with number eight Ryan Kankowski coming in for Keegan Daniel and flyhalf Elton Jantjies, who has yet to earn a test cap, taking Olivier’s place on the bench.
Jean de Villiers, who had originally been named South Africa captain for just the England series, has had the appointment extended for the rest of the year.
“Jean has been unbelievable as captain and has matched my expectations,” Meyer told a news conference in Port Elizabeth.
“We want to plan for the rest of the year. It is always important to have a special leader to gel the team and there is a lot of respect for him from the players.
“It was very easy to make him captain. I have worked with a lot of good captains and he is right up there,” Meyer added.
De Villiers said that being appointed captain for the rest of the year would hopefully benefit him and the team.
Article source: http://af.reuters.com/article/sportsNews/idAFJOE85J05420120620