Springboks give Wallabies double Jantjies trouble

Herschel Jantjies during the South African national men's rugby team training session at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on July 10, 2019 in Pretoria, South Africa. (Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images)

Herschel Jantjies during the South African national men's rugby team training session at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on July 10, 2019 in Pretoria, South Africa. (Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images)

Rassie Erasmus goes for Elton and Herschel as halfback pairing as Eben Etzebeth deputises as skipper.

The Wallabies will have double Jantjies trouble after Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus selected Elton and Herschel  for Saturday’s Rugby Championship opener at Ellis Park.

Stormers halfback Herschel is a particularly eye-catching selection, completing a rapid rise through the ranks following an excellent Super Rugby campaign.

While the 23-year-old has an undoubtedly experienced partner outside him, the two players haven’t played as a combination yet and might experience a few problems gelling initially.

Not that Bok assistant coach Mzwandile Stick is too concerned.

“If you look at their respective styles of play, I think they complement one another,” he said earlier this week.

“Herschel has got a great service from the base, and we all know that on a good day Elton Jantjies can really destroy teams when he’s getting front-foot ball. They should be able to give us a solid game.”

Another debutant is 29-year-old Rynhardt Elstadt, who has become a hit in France since moving to Toulouse and completes a loose trio with a distinct punch in the physical stakes.

Erasmus also has the experienced Marcell Coetzee back on the bench as well, another player known for being physical as well as dynamic on the ground.

Eben Etzebeth, who deputised for Warren Whiteley as national skipper in 2017, resumes that role in the absence of Siya Kolisi and is also part of a group of senior players – Pieter-Steph du Toit, Beast Mtawarira and Lood de Jager –  regaining match fitness.

Bulls stalwart Lizo Gqoboka is rewarded for a fine season, while Stormers dynamo Dillyn Leyds returns for the first time in two years.

Overseas stars Cobus Reinach and Frans Steyn add steel to the bench.

Springboks: Warrick Gelant, Sbu Nkosi, Jesse Kriel, Andre Esterhuizen, Makazole Mapimpi, Elton Jantjies, Herschel Jantjies, Francois Louw, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Rynhardt Elstadt, Lood de Jager, Eben Etzebeth (c), Trevor Nyakane, Bongi Mbonambi, Beast Mtawarira. Bench: Schalk Brits, Lizo Gqoboka, Vince Koch, Marvin Orie, Marcell Coetzee, Cobus Reinach, Frans Steyn, Dillyn Leyds.

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