Steyn returns for Springboks
September 9, 2009
Bakkies Botha is determined to match the All Blacks this weekend © Getty Images
South Africa have made just one change to their starting line-up for Saturday's crucial Tri-Nations match against New Zealand in Hamilton.
Francois Steyn is recalled to the side at fullback in the place of Ruan Pienaar with coach Peter de Villiers resisting the urge to make wholesale changes following the Springboks' 21-6 humbling at the hands of Australia last weekend.
"We've tried to keep it as simple as possible. But there is a bit of horses for courses and Frans can play a major role in Hamilton with his boot," De Villiers told media. "It's not a shift in game plan. We expect Dan Carter to kick more and with Frans we can put ourselves back in position and able to dictate play."
Bryan Habana, who has been under an injury cloud with a hamstring strain, has been named on the wing, while No.8 Pierre Spies is nursing a groin problem. Despite the obvious issues with the scrum in Brisbane, the coach has opted to stick with his front row so captain John Smit remains at tighthead prop.
"The medical team have worked intensively with a few players this week and they will continue to do so between now and the game," added De Villiers. "We always said that we expected to pick up a few injuries close to the end of the Tri-Nations and it is a case of managing the players properly."
South Africa: Francois Steyn; Odwa Ndungane, Jaque Fourie, Jean de Villiers, Bryan Habana; Morne Steyn, Fourie du Preez; Tendai Mtawarira, Bismarck du Plessis, John Smith, Bakkies Botha, Victor Matfield, Heinrich Brussow, Juan Smith, Pierre Spies.
Replacements: Chiliboy Ralepelle, Jannie du Plessis, Danie Rossouw, Schalk Burger, Enrico Januarie, Adrian Jacobs, Ruan Pienaar.
Ahead of November's USA-All Blacks match, America's ESPN Magazine explains rugby to its readers who may not be familiar with the game
Tom Hamilton talks to World Cup-winning captain John Smit about life after rugby, his fears over the South African exodus and the World Cup
The reopening of the openside debate, a dominant wolf-pack and a sublime performance in defeat - Monday Maul looks at the weekend's talking points
The latest Week in Pictures takes in the Rugby Championship alongside the best photographs from around the domestic game