Four players will earn their first World Rugby U20 Championship starts for the Junior Springboks in the semi-final against England on Tuesday.
They are flyhalf David Coetzer, flanker Phendulani Buthelezi, hooker Tiaan van der Merwe and prop Alulutho Tshakweni.
Their inclusion is among six changes to coach Chean Roux’s run-on team.
Coetzer and Buthelezi joined the squad in the south of France last week as injury replacements, and while the former made his U20 Championship debut against France off the bench, the latter will play his first match in the tournament. Buthelezi though is no stranger to international rugby after featuring in the all of the SAU20 warm-up matches in the lead-up to the international showpiece.
Van der Merwe and Tshakweni, who both scored tries in the pool match against France, will also start in a new-look front row with tighthead prop Sazi Sandi.
The other change to Roux’s team is at inside-centre where Rikus Pretorius returns after recovering from the ankle injury he suffered in the opening match against Georgia. He will partner up with Manuel Rass in the midfield.
The bench will also feature two tournament debutantes, as prop Leon Lyons – who joined the team on Saturday in place of the injured Nathan McBeth – and scrumhalf Jack Hart, have been drafted in among the replacements.
‘There was an injury and another recovering from injury, while we also opted to bring on fresh legs,’ said Roux. ‘We think this is a very good side, and we are looking forward to the game.’
Roux expects a massive onslaught from England, who finished the pool stage as the top team.
‘England are a very physical and well-coached side. Their set pieces are very good and they have two brilliant wingers, so we need to counter that.’
The match, which will be hosted at Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l’Amitié, will kick off at 7pm and will be broadcast live on SuperSport 1.
Junior Springboks – 15 Gianni Lombard,14 Tyrone Green, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Rikus Pretorius, 11 Wandisile Simelane, 10 David Coetzer, 9 Zak Burger, 8 Muller Uys, 7 PJ Steenkamp, 6 Phendulani Buthelezi, 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Salmaan Moerat (c), 3 Sazi Sandi, 2 Tiaan van der Merwe, 1 Alulutho Tshakweni.
Subs: 16 Schalk Erasmus, 17 Leon Lyons, 18 Asenathi Ntlabakanye, 19 Ben-Jason Dixon, 20 Dian Schoonees, 21 Jack Hart, 22 Lubabalo Dobela, 23 Sihle Njezula.
Photo: Michael Steele/Getty Images