Springbok coach Peter de Villiers may well unleash some of the young stars in his touring party on Scotland in Saturday’s rugby test at Murrayfield.
De Villiers on Monday hinted at changes to the team that beat Wales in Cardiff.
“The third week of the tour is the toughest one because it’s the time where guys that have not played yet become negative and players start moaning about the food and little things,” said De Villiers.
“Perhaps one or two changes can be good for the team. The temptation is definitely there to look at some new blood.”
De Villiers’s statement may well be good news for the likes of Patrick Lambie, Francois Hougaard and Lwazi Mvovo.
However, the coach was commenting before a meeting with his fellow selectors and it will be interesting to see what side is announced on Tuesday.
There was no field session on Monday to provide any hint of what would be coming as the Boks worked overtime on their video analysis.
With Chiliboy Ralepelle and Bjorn Basson having been sent home under a doping cloud, De Villiers has no other choice than to make a new plan at right wing and for a replacement hooker.
Adriaan Strauss is on tour and set to cover hooker off the bench, while there are a number of possibilities for the No 14 jersey. Gio Aplon may well slot in there and Zane Kirchner is then likely to play fullback.
Lambie will be a big talking point because if he makes the starting line-up it could be at the expense of Morné Steyn at flyhalf. It may well help the Boks with a few attacking ideas, but South Africa will then also be sacrificing a brilliant goalkicker.
At left wing there is also a selection poser. Bryan Habana may have been a good buy for the Stormers and Western Province, but is clearly struggling in the Green and Gold. Mvovo is an option, but once again it’s a tough call to make.
Loose forward Willem Alberts also made a big difference when he replaced Deon Stegmann in the Millennium Stadium, but the wisdom of taking the Scots on without a fetching flank may also be questionable.
Keegan Daniel is also an option for the No 6 jersey, but is a loose forward with an all-round skills-set and possibly not as good as Stegmann on the ground.
There would also have been discussions about possible involvement for Coenie Oosthuizen, Alistair Hargreaves and Elton Jantjies at the selectors’ meeting. Not one of them have seen action on tour.
De Villiers said that a video session on Monday had achieved more than what could be done on the training field.
“We made it look very difficult on Saturday. We came within a metre of the try-line four times without managing to score. That is why we had to put our bodies on the line in the last five minutes. We wanted to work through every minute of the game to see how poor our execution was,” said De Villiers.
The coach is also fed-up with the Boks’ tendency to start tests badly.
“We addressed it and said that the dishonesty has to stop. It’s 80 minutes of your life in which you have to give everything.”