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Springboks name two uncapped players in 32-strong UK tour squad

By Liam Heagney

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Springboks boss Jacques Nienaber has named a 32-strong squad for next month’s three-game UK tour, calling up rookie lock Salmaan Moerat to join the uncapped Grant Williams in a travelling party that doesn’t include regular first-choice players Faf de Klerk, Cheslin Kolbe and Frans Malherbe who are missing through injury. 

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Wales, Scotland and England will provide the opposition on successive November Saturdays to South Africa, who signed off on their Rugby Championship campaign earlier this month with a win over the All Blacks in Australia.

Ex-SA schools and Junior Springbok captain Moerat has earned his first Springbok call-up in a squad where the only other uncapped player named by Nienaber is scrum-half Grant Williams, who travelled to Australia with the Springboks for the Rugby Championship.

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Eddie Jones’ England squad media briefing
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Eddie Jones’ England squad media briefing

The main injury-enforced omissions from a squad featuring 18 forwards and 14 backs are de Klerk (hip flexor), Kolbe (knee), Malherbe (neck) and RG Snyman (knee). Other players not considered for selection included Pieter-Steph du Toit and Rynhardt Elstadt, who are respectively recovering from shoulder and ankle injuries.

“Salmaan has established himself as a talented lock and captain since his younger days in our junior structures and he has continued to show his class at senior level for the Stormers and Western Province.

“His call-up is well earned and we are looking forward to witnessing what he adds to the squad. He is also familiar with most of the players in the squad having either played with them or against them, so we have no doubt he will slot in with ease,” explained Springboks boss Nienaber, who added: “It’s always unfortunate to lose players due to injury, but we have good depth in our squad and these are established players who have proven themselves at the highest level.

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“With the easing of travel restrictions to Europe and the UK, we were able to revert to a more manageable touring squad. We are two years out from the World Cup in France and we have close to 20 Test matches before we start our defence of the title, so every match will count in terms of building confidence and consistency as a group.”

SPRINGBOKS SQUAD (vs Wales, Scotland, England)  
Props:
Thomas du Toit (Cell C Sharks) – 13 caps
Steven Kitshoff (DHL Stormers) – 56 caps
Vincent Koch (Saracens) – 28 caps
Ox Nché (Cell C Sharks) – 6 caps
Trevor Nyakane (Vodacom Bulls) – 51 caps

Hookers:
Joseph Dweba (Bordeaux Bègles) – 1 cap
Malcolm Marx (Kubota Spears) – 43 caps
Bongi Mbonambi (DHL Stormers) – 45 caps

Locks:
Lood de Jager (Sale Sharks) – 53 caps
Eben Etzebeth (Toulon) – 94 caps
Salmaan Moerat (DHL Stormers) – Uncapped
Marvin Orie (DHL Stormers) – 7 caps

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Loose forwards:
Siya Kolisi (captain, Cell C Sharks) – 60 caps
Kwagga Smith (Yamaha Júbilo) – 16 caps
Marco van Staden (Leicester Tigers) – 9 caps
Duane Vermeulen (Ulster) – 58 caps
Jasper Wiese (Leicester Tigers) – 8 caps

Utility forward:
Franco Mostert (Honda Heat) – 48 caps

Scrum-halves:
Herschel Jantjies (DHL Stormers) – 18 caps
Cobus Reinach (Montpellier) – 18 caps
Grant Williams (Cell C Sharks) – Uncapped

Fly-halves:
Elton Jantjies (NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes) – 41 caps
Handre Pollard (Montpellier) – 57 caps

Midfielders:
Lukhanyo Am (Cell C Sharks) – 23 caps
Damian de Allende (Munster) – 55 caps
Jesse Kriel (Canon Eagles) – 48 caps

Outside backs:
Aphelele Fassi (Cell C Sharks) – 2 caps
Willie le Roux (Toyota Verblitz) – 70 caps
Makazole Mapimpi (Cell C Sharks) – 22 caps
Sbu Nkosi (Cell C Sharks) – 25 caps

Utility backs:
Damian Willemse (DHL Stormers) – 14 caps
Frans Steyn (Toyota Cheetahs) – 71 caps

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Springboks name two uncapped players in 32-strong UK tour squad

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