x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

De Villiers certain Boks will be back

The South Africa coach has made two enforced changes for the second Tri Nations Test as his team look to make amends for their loss to New Zealand.

Peter de Villiers is confident of improvement.
Peter de Villiers is confident of improvement.

Peter de Villiers, the South Africa coach, has made two enforced changes for the second Tri Nations Test in Wellington on Saturday as his team look to make amends for their humbling loss to New Zealand. With Bakkies Botha, the lock, banned for nine weeks for headbutting Jimmy Cowan in the opening minute of Saturday's 32-12 defeat and Jannie du Plessis, the prop, ruled out with a calf injury, both Danie Rossouw and CJ van der Linde come into the pack.

Another change comes on the bench where Ryan Kankowski, the loose forward, replaces the promoted Rossouw. For the remainder of the starting XV there is a chance for them to redeem themselves after a poor performance at Eden Park. De Villiers said: "I trust this bunch of people who are with me. They weren't on song on Saturday but they weren't bad, it's just the All Blacks were very good. These boys are much better than what they showed on Saturday and it's time for them to stand up."

John Smit, the Springboks captain, added: "When you've let yourself down and you've been beaten properly you've got to look back and go back to the basics and see what made you a good team and stick to that. "It doesn't go pear-shaped overnight but you've got to revisit the basics that have made you a good team and that's what we've had to do." Smit is confident there will be nothing to compare with Botha's foolish move this weekend at Westpac Stadium.

"Discipline will always be a factor every week and we said it after the game on Saturday. You don't want to see incidents like [Botha's]. It's disappointing for us as a team and it's been dealt with and it's been just reward for silly behaviour," Smit said. South Africa, unable to break a losing streak at Auckland's Eden Park that dates back to 1937, face a similarly daunting task at Wellington's Westpac stadium where they have never won a Tri Nations match.

Injuries forced the All Blacks to delay naming their team until tomorrow morning. Richard Kahui, the utility back, saw a specialist on Monday after sustaining soft-tissue damage to his left shoulder. Cowan (strained abdomen), the scrum-half, and Josevata Rokocoko (hamstring strain), the winger, are still in the selection frame. Zac Guildford, the recalled winger, and Alby Mathewson, the No 9, have joined up with the squad.

* Agencies