John Smit has moved to the bench while Frans Steyn retains the number 12 jersey ahead of Jean de Villiers.
Matfield returns from a hamstring strain – after a two-match absence – as one of seven changes to the team that defeated Namibia 87-0 at the same venue on Thursday.
He assumes the captaincy in place of John Smit, who drops to the bench, in a pre-planned move to allow Bismarck du Plessis to start his first match of the tournament.
The Springboks need at least one point from the match to be sure of qualifying for the quarterfinals.
There are five changes in the pack as Du Plessis is partnered with the returning Tendai Mtawarira and brother Jannie du Plessis in an all-Sharks front row. The final change among the forwards sees the return of Heinrich Brüssow to the back row.
Bakkies Botha was unavailable for selection after injuring a hamstring against Namibia but the remaining four forwards (Smit, CJ van der Linde, Gurthrö Steenkamp, Willem Alberts) all drop to the bench.
JP Pietersen and Fourie du Preez return to the starting line-up among the back division while the versatile Francois Hougaard drops to the bench where he is joined by the fit-again Jean de Villiers as the two backline replacements in a 5/2 split on the bench.
Friday’s match kicks off at 20h30 (09h30 SA time).
South Africa v Samoa, 30 September 2011, North Harbour Stadium, Auckland
|13||Jaque Fourie||Western Province||67||13|
|12||Frans Steyn||Racing Metro, France||46||10|
|11||Bryan Habana||Western Province||72||9|
|10||Morné Steyn||Blue Bulls||32||3|
|9||Fourie du Preez||Blue Bulls||60||9|
|8||Pierre Spies||Blue Bulls||45||3|
|7||Schalk Burger||Western Province||66||11|
|6||Heinrich Brüssow||Free State||18||3|
|5||Victor Matfield (captain)||Blue Bulls||108||12|
|4||Danie Rossouw||Blue Bulls||61||13|
|3||Jannie du Plessis||KwaZulu-Natal||28||4|
|2||Bismarck du Plessis||KwaZulu-Natal||40||7|
|17||Gurthrö Steenkamp||Blue Bulls||36||5|
|18||CJ van der Linde||Golden Lions||73||7|
|20||Francois Louw||Bath, England||9||2|
|21||Francois Hougaard||Blue Bulls||13||3|
|22||Jean de Villiers||Western Province||70||2|
- The starting line-up has 723 caps
- The oldest player is Victor Matfield (34 Years)
- The youngest player is Pat Lambie (20 Years)
- The heaviest player is CJ van der Linde (123 kg)
- The lightest player is Fourie du Preez (88 kg)
- The tallest player is Victor Matfield (2.01 m)
- The shortest player is Pat Lambie (1.77 m)
- The average weight of the forwards is 116 kg
- The average weight of the backs is 95 kg
- Friday’s match is South Africa’s 29th in Rugby World Cup tournaments. Of the previous 28, only three were lost for a winning percentage of 89.3%, the best by any participant in this tournament.
- So far South Africa scored 114 tries in Rugby World Cup tournaments and is currently on 987 points, 13 points short of 1 000 RWC points.
- South Africa and Samoa have met on six occasions – three of those meetings at the Rugby World Cup. The last match between the teams was at the 2007 tournament when South Africa won, 59-7. Twelve of Friday’s match 22 played in that match in Paris, in which Bryan Habana scored four tries.
13/04/1995: South Africa won 60-8 in Johannesburg.
10/06/1995: South Africa won 42-14 in Johannesburg.
06/07/2002: South Africa won 60-18 in Pretoria.
01/11/2003: South Africa won 60-10 in Brisbane.
09/06/2007: South Africa won 35-8 in Johannesburg.
09/09/2007: South Africa won 59-7 in Paris.
PLAYERS’ MILESTONES & RECORDS
- Victor Matfield will captain the Springboks for the 17th time. Of the previous 16 tests, South Africa have won 11 for a win percentage of 68.75. Victor will play in his 109th test match to join John Smit as the most capped Springbok.
- Should John Smit be used it will be his 110th test and his 16th in RWC tournaments, equalling Os du Randt’s Springbok record. John has played all his Rugby World Cup tests consecutively. The record for most consecutive RWC tests is 18 and is held by Martin Johnson of England.
- Bryan Habana is the top try scorer in tests for South Africa with 39 tries in 72 tests. He shares the Springbok record for career tries in Rugby World Cups with Jaque Fourie, both on nine career tries.
- Jaque Fourie holds the Springbok record for most career tries as a centre with 28. He shares with Jean de Villiers the record as the most capped Springbok centre with 56 caps. And shares with Bryan Habana the Springbok record for most tries in Rugby World Cup tournaments with nine.
- Morne Steyn needs four points to reach 400 points in tests career. He is currently the leading points scorer in this tournament with 48 points. He will appear in his 21st consecutive test match.
- Danie Rossouw made his Rugby World Cup debut in 2003 and with six tries in tournaments he is now the Springbok record holder for tries by a forward.
- Schalk Burger is South Africa’s most capped flank forward with 64 tests and shares the Springbok try scoring record for a flank with Juan Smith with 11 tries each.
- Pierre Spies is South Africa’s top try scorer in tests as a No 8 with seven tries.
- Gurthrö Steenkamp is South Africa’s top try scorer as a prop in tests with six tries.
- Jannie and Bismarck du Plessis will play together for a 19th time.
SA RECORD v SAMOA
|9 058||Points||3 740|
|6 182||Points conceded||3 969|
|109 – John Smit||Most tests||65 – BP Lima|
|893 – Percy Montgomery||Most points||184 – EV Va’a|
|39 – Bryan Habana||Most tries||31 – BP Lima|
|153 – Percy Montgomery||Most conversions||32 – EV Va’a|
|148 – Percy Montgomery||Most penalty goals||31 – by 3 players|
|18 – Naas Botha||Most drop goals||2 – by 3 players|
Peter de Villiers match record is as follows: 45 test matches of which 28 were won with 17 losses for a win percentage of 62.2.
Titimaea Tafua made his Samoa Coaching debut in 2009 against Japan. His match record is 22 test matches with 11 wins and 11 losses for a win percentage of 50. Under his guidance Samoa won their first IRB Pacific Nations Cup in 2010.
NORTH HARBOUR STADIUM
South Africa’s first match at this venue was last Thursday against Namibia, which was won 87-0.
Nigel Owens of Wales made his International Test debut in the match between Ireland and Japan in 2005 in Osaka. Since then he officiated as referee on six occasions with the Springboks involved. Of the six tests, South Africa won 4 and lost 2.