Meyer keeps the faith
Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer named an unchanged starting line-up for Saturday's Test against England at Twickenham.
He retained the team that defeated Scotland, 21-10, last weekend with JP Pietersen and Gurthrö Steenkamp, cleared for selection after treatment of niggling injuries.
The only changes are on the bench, where Pat Cilliers comes in for the injured CJ van der Linde and Elton Jantjies replaces Morné Steyn.
Springbok captain Jean de Villiers will become the fifth most-capped Springbok of all time and most-capped member of the 2012 squad when he plays in his 84th Test.
De Villiers will pass Bryan Habana on 83 caps to move into fifth place behind John Smit (111), Victor Matfield (110), Percy Montgomery (102) and Joost van der Westhuizen (89).
"I’m very chuffed for Jean," said Meyer.
"He took over the captaincy in a challenging year and has been a rock in our team. The fact that Jean has played in every Test this season, and finished all of them, is testimony to his amazing resilience and work ethic.
"Jean has been the glue that has kept our team together and for that I salute him."
The total number of Test caps in the starting team for the last Test of the tour is 431 – 158 in the forwards and 273 in the back-line.
"It’s great to be able to field an unchanged team," said Meyer.
"We’ve been able to show some consistency in selection on this tour and that is a good thing. The players have worked extremely hard on the training field and it wasn’t easy to select the match 23 for each of the three Tests, but I’m happy that we managed to stick to combinations."
"His development as a player to experience the conditions here and to play in front of a big crowd like Twickenham," said Meyer.
South Africa: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers (c), 11 Francois Hougaard, 10 Pat Lambie, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Gurthrö Steenkamp.
Replacements: 16 Schalk Brits, 17 Heinke van der Merwe, 18 Pat Cilliers, 19 Flip van der Merwe, 20 Marcell Coetzee, 21 Elton Jantjies, 22 Jaco Taute, 23 Lwazi Mvovo.
Date: Saturday 24 November
Venue: Twickenham Stadium, London
Kick-off: 14:30 GMT (16:30 SA time)
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)
Television match official: Jim Yuille (Scotland)