Eben Etzebeth will captain South Africa in their opening match of the 2019 Rugby Championship against Australia at the Emirates Airline Park in Johannesburg on Saturday as coach Rassie Erasmus named his 23-man squad on Wednesday.
Etzebeth, who is set to lead the Springboks for a 12th time, will stand in for regular captain Siya Kolisi who is still recovering from a knee injury.
Erasmus also named three uncapped players in the squad. Rynhardt Elstadt (lock/loose forward) & Herschel Jantjies (scrum-half) are set to make their Springbok debuts while Lizo Gqoboka (prop) will start from the bench.
Tendai “The Beast” Mtawarira is set to make his 51st appearance for the Springboks at the Rugby Championship, two behind the side’s all-time leader Bryan Habana (53).
The Rugby Championship is an annual international rugby union competition contested by Argentina, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
The Springboks have won the tournament three times, in 1998, 2004 and 2009.
South Africa’s 23-man squad: 15. Warrick Gelant, 14. S’bu Nkosi, 13. Jesse Kriel, 12. Andre Esterhuizen, 11. Makazole Mapimpi, 10. Elton Jantjies, 9. Herschel Jantjies, 8. Francois Louw, 7. Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6. Rynhardt Elstadt, 5. Lood de Jager, 4. Eben Etzebeth (c), 3. Trevor Nyakane, 2. Bongi Mbonambi, 1. Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16. Schalk Brits, 17. Lizo Gqoboka, 18. Vincent Koch, 19. Marvin Orie, 20. Marcell Coetzee, 21. Cobus Reinach, 22. Frans Steyn, 23. Dillyn Leyds