South Africa returns to action on the third round of the Rugby Championship. With two victories in a row against Los Pumas, the world champion will seek to continue on a roll against Los Pumas. Wallabies, which reaped two defeats in the same number of games against New Zealand. You can live the game on Sunday from 6.50 AM on Star + and on ESPN 3.
HOW DO THEY GET THERE: After a year without competing due to the interruption of the tournaments due to Covid 19, the Springboks returned better than ever to the first scene of world rugby. They took the series against the British & Irish Lions, by 2 to 1 and started the Rugby Championship with their usual solidity, clearly beating Los Pumas in both matches. For Australia it was not the same, after beating a French national team with a lot of effort with several absences by 2 to 1 in the July window, they collided with another reality: the All Blacks, who were forceful and won the three Bledisloe matches. Cup, two in New Zealand and the last one in Australia. The Wallabies, in this way, accumulate 19 years without getting that trophy against their classic rival.
WHAT DO THEY SEEK: South Africa does very well with the title of world champion and number one in the ranking. The title in Japan 2019 restored their confidence and generated a breadth of options that attracts attention, with two full rosters of a very even level (this was demonstrated in July on the Lions’ extensive tour of their country). In the case of Australia, there is a new process, with Dave Rennie applying a great renovation in his campus. The idea is there, but they still could not translate it. However, the quality of the players they have and they just need to start working collectively.
THE KEYS: The strength of the Springboks and their game system, questioned by rivals but extremely effective for Jacques Nienaber and all his staff. Forwards create an impenetrable wall that is very difficult for opponents to overcome. The data is that of the last five games only visited the South African Ingoal Luke Cowan-Dickie and Ken Owens of the Lions and Pablo Matera, of Los Pumas. In the attack, on the other hand, they use the foot like a dagger, to generate again and again the error in the rival defenses. In Australia they expect this match as a great challenge, because they have the weapons to destabilize any defensive system. Kerevi and Koroibete were a permanent alarm for the All Blacks and with them they have the key to disorganize the South African defense. In the rucks there will also be a tough fight, with two teams that play very well in that formation and have the maul as their favorite weapon to subdue their rival.
BACKGROUND: The last time they played was in 2019, at Ellis Park in Johannesburg, prior to the World Cup in Japan (with the score 35 to 17 for the Springboks). In Australia the last game was in 2018, in Brisbane, with the victory of the Wallabies, by a tight 23 to 18. South Africa has not won in Australia since 2016, at Suncorp Stadium, when it did it by 23 to 17. Also they were imposed as visitors in 2015 (24-20) and in 2014 (24-23)
Australia: 1. Angus Bell, 2. Faolau Fainga’a, 3. Allan Alaalatoa, 4. Izack Rodda, 5. Matt Philip, 6. Lachlan Swinton, 7. Michael Hooper (C), 8. Rob Valetini, 9.Tate McDermott , 10. Quade Cooper, 11. Marika Koroibete, 12. Samu Kerevi, 13. Len Ikitau, 14. Andrew Kellaway, 15. Tom Banks.
Alternates: 16. Feleti Kaitu’u, 17. James Slipper, 18. Taniela Tupou, 19. Rob Leota, 20. Pete Samu, 21. Nic White, 22. Reece Hodge, 23. Jordan Petaia.
South Africa: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Franco Mostert, 6 Siya Kolisi (c), 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff
Alternates: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Ox Nché, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Marco van Staden, 20 Kwagga Smith, 21 Jasper Wiese, 22 Herschel Jantjies, 23 Damian Willemse