Lionel Mapoe
Lionel Mapoe

Springbok coach Allister Coetzee made only one change to his squad to face France in the second test at Kings Park in Durban on Saturday with Lionel Mapoe replacing injured Jesse Kriel at outside centre.

“It was really an easy selection to make this week after the way the team performed last weekend. We were happy with combinations during the first Test‚” Coetzee said announcing the squad at the team hotel in Durban on Thursday.

“I have selected Jan Serfontein at number 12 who had a good match in Pretoria and it was a no-brainer to bring Lionel (Mapoe) at number 13.

“Lionel is an underrated player and fortunately he has played a lot of rugby with Elton Jantjies at the Lions. It also means we are preventing making two changes to the team.”

Coetzee emphasised that the Boks might need to improve on the weekend’s 37-14 win at Loftus Versfeld‚ considering that opposite number Guy Noves made eight changes to his squad for Saturday’s clash‚ where France have to win to keep the series alive with one match to go in Johannesburg.

“There was a lot of attention to the uncapped back three last week. We have a lot of things to improve upon‚” the Bok coach said.

“We created a lot of opportunities but we must be in a position to execute and finish. We need to be neat and tidy in the scrum‚ our lineouts also need some work‚ and basically all departments must improve.”

Coetzee said he went for consistency and last weekend’s five debutants – Andries Coetzee‚ Raymond Rhule‚ Courtnall Skosan‚ Ross Cronje and Dillyn Leyds – will earn their second caps.

“We kept changes to a minimum and one change to the squad means we can continue to work on our continuity‚ which is so important.

“This is a new group‚ so playing together again means that the important combinations are gaining more experience. It is also nice to reward good performances and all of them deserve another opportunity‚” said Coetzee.

Springbok XV: 15. Andries Coetzee‚ 14. Raymond Rhule‚ 13. Lionel Mapoe‚ 12. Jan Serfontein‚ 11. Courtnall Skosan‚ 10. Elton Jantjies‚ 9. Ross Cronje‚ 8. Warren Whiteley‚ 7. Oupa Mohoje‚ 6. Siya Kolisi‚ 5. Franco Mostert‚ 4. Eben Etzebeth‚ 3. Frans Malherbe‚ 2. Malcolm Marx‚ 1. Tendai Mtawarira

Replacements: 16. Bongi Mbonambi‚ 17. Steven Kitshoff‚ 18. Coenie Oosthuizen‚ 19. Pieter-Steph du Toit‚ 20. Jean-Luc du Preez‚ 21. Francois Hougaard‚ 22. Frans Steyn‚ 23. Dillyn Leyds

- TMG Digital/TMG Sport

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