Pat returns, Rohan omitted

Pat Lambie and Willie le Roux have been included in the 31-man Springbok squad for the two home Tests, while Lions centre Rohan Janse van Rensburg has been overlooked.

Along with the experienced backline duo, Lood de Jager and Julian Redelinghuys will return in the pack after recovering from injuries which kept them out of action for between one and four weeks respectively.

The rest of the 28-man tour squad that did duty in the recent away matches against the Wallabies and the All Blacks shows only one change, with Redelinghuys replacing Lourens Adriaanse. It would appear that Bok coach Allister Coetzee is satisfied with the midfielders at his disposal, and that Janse van Rensburg, the form No 12 in South Africa, won't be considered for the Tests to come.

The Boks will assemble in Johannesburg on Sunday to resume with preparations for the return encounter against the Wallabies on 1 October in Pretoria. They will conclude their 2016 campaign against the All Blacks a week later, on Saturday, 8 October in Durban.

Lambie has returned to full fitness after he was concussed in the first Test of the season. Le Roux last saw Springbok action against Ireland in June and joins the Boks from his Japanese club, the Canon Eagles.

Redelinghuys has recovered from the hamstring injury he picked up in the Boks' win over the Pumas in Nelspruit, which caused him to miss the away fixtures against Argentina, the Wallabies and the All Blacks.

De Jager, in turn, received a bump on the knee while playing against the Wallabies in Brisbane two weeks ago after which he returned home. Willem Alberts, who was called up as replacement for the Christchurch encounter, remains with the squad.

'Although the results have not gone our way so far in the campaign, I think it will be good to keep the current squad together so that we can build continuity,' said Bok coach Allister Coetzee.

'It’s great to have players with the experience of Pat and Willie back in the squad. The same goes for Julian and Lood, both of whom have played very well for us this year and will add something to the pack.

'Pat has been included in the squad so that our medical and conditioning team can get first-hand feedback. We want to ascertain his readiness and confidence for international rugby or whether he rather needs to play another match in the Currie Cup for the Sharks.'

Although disappointed with the outcome of the three away matches, Coetzee said the coming two home matches against the Wallabies and the All Blacks will provide his team with the chance to deliver improved performances.

'We have much work to do as a team and the best way to build confidence is to keep continuity and improve on the individual errors and our game management that have so far hampered us.

'The two remaining matches will be huge for us and the squad will work hard during the next two weeks to make sure we are well prepared to face the Wallabies and the All Blacks.'

The Springbok squad for the last two matches in the Castle Lager Rugby Championship:
1. Willem Alberts (Stade Français, France) 39 caps, 35 points
2. Damian de Allende (DHL Stormers) 19 caps, 10 points
3. Lood de Jager (Toyota Cheetahs) 23 caps, 20 points
4. Juan de Jongh (DHL Stormers) 17 caps, 15 points
5. Faf de Klerk (Emirates Lions) 7 caps, 0 points
6. Pieter-Steph du Toit (DHL Stormers) 15 caps, 15 points
7. Eben Etzebeth (DHL Stormers) 51 caps, 10 points
8. Johan Goosen (Racing 92, France) 10 caps, 20 points
9. Bryan Habana (vice-captain, Toulon, France) 121 caps, 330 points
10. Francois Hougaard (Worcester Warriors, England) 37 caps, 25 points
11. Elton Jantjies (Emirates Lions), 9 caps, 69 points
12. Steven Kitshoff (Bordeaux Bègles, France) 5 caps, 0 points
13. Vincent Koch (DHL Stormers/Steval Pumas) 5 caps, 0 points
14. Jaco Kriel (Emirates Lions), 5 caps, 0 points
15. Jesse Kriel (Vodacom Bulls), 16 caps, 15 points
16. Patrick Lambie (Cell C Sharks), 51 caps, 137 points
17. Willie le Roux (Canon Eagles, Japan) 37 caps, 45 points
18. Francois Louw (Bath, England) 50 caps, 40 points
19. Lionel Mapoe (Emirates Lions) 7 caps, 0 points
20. Malcolm Marx (Emirates Lions) 1 cap, 0 points
21. Bongi Mbonambi (DHL Stormers) 2 caps, 0 points
22. Oupa Mohoje (Toyota Cheetahs) 12 caps, 0 points
23. Franco Mostert (Emirates Lions) 4 caps, 0 points
24. Tendai Mtawarira (Cell C Sharks) 82 caps, 10 points
25. Lwazi Mvovo (Cell C Sharks) 17 caps, 30 points
26. Trevor Nyakane (Vodacom Bulls) 26 caps, 5 points
27. Rudy Paige (Vodacom Bulls) 4 caps, 0 points
28. Julian Redelinghuys (Emirates Lions) 6 caps, 0 points
29. Morné Steyn (Stade Français, France) 64 caps, 703 points
30. Adriaan Strauss (captain, Vodacom Bulls) 61 caps, 30 points
31. Warren Whiteley (Emirates Lions) 10 caps, 15 points

Photo: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images

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Jon Cardinelli