Pollard back at 12 for semi


There are five changes in the starting line-up of the Junior Springboks to play against Wales in the IRB Junior World Championship rugby semi-final in Vannes, France, on Tuesday evening.

Amongst the backs, flyhalf Robert du Preez returns to play in the No 10 jersey while Handré Pollard moves to inside centre in place of Rohan Janse van Rensburg. Stefan Ungerer reclaims the No 9 jersey from his Sharks provincial team mate Hanco Venter.

Andrew Beerwinkel will start at loose head prop in place of Sti Sithole while Luan de Bruin is restored to the side after missing the match against France because of suspension. De Bruin’s suspension of four weeks was set aside following a successful appeal. Marné Coetzee therefore moves to the bench to make way for De Bruin.

Amongst the replacements, flanker Kwagga Smith comes in for the injured Jannes Kirsten while Justin Geduld, who missed the French match because of a slight knee injury, was included amongst the backs after passing a fitness test on Monday.

Junior Springboks coach, Dawie Theron, commented: “This is a very important match for us and we know that Wales is a well-coached side with a good structure and especially a very good kicking game. We have done our homework and believe that we are a well-prepared physical side and we are comfortable with the way we want to play. The team is looking forward to play in this semi-final match.”

Kick-off time is 18:15 and SuperSport will show both semi-finals live, with broadcasting starting from 18:00.

The SA Under-20 team to play Wales on Tuesday, 18 June 2013 in Vannes:

15. Cheslin Kolbe (DHL Western Province)

14. Luther Obi (Platinum Leopard)

13. Dries Swanepoel (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

12. Handré Pollard (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

11. Seabelo Senatla (SARU contracted)

10. Robert du Preez (The Sharks)

9.   Stefan Ungerer (The Sharks)

8. Ruan Steenkamp (captain, Vodacom Blue Bulls)

7. Jacques du Plessis (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

6. Roelof Smit (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

5. Dennis Visser (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

4. Irné Herbst (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

3. Luan de Bruin (Toyota Free State Cheetahs)

2. Jacques du Toit (Toyota Free State Cheetahs)

1. Andrew Beerwinkel (Vodacom Blue Bulls)


16. Michael Willemse (DHL Western Province)

17. St Sithole (DHL Western Province)

18. Aidon Davis (EP Kings)

19. Kwagga Smith (MTN Golden Lions)

20. Percy Williams (MTN Golden Lions)

21. Justin Geduld (SARU contracted)

22. Jesse Kriel (Vodacom Blue Bulls)

23. Marné Coetzee (The Sharks)

Some interesting JWC facts:

Seven teams have contested an IRB Junior World Championship semi-final in New Zealand, England, South Africa, France, Australia, Wales and Argentina.

Stade de la Rabine in Vannes will become the seventh venue to host a JWC semi-final after Rodney Parade (2008), Cardiff Arms Park (2008), Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium (2009), Estadio El Coloso del Parque (2010), Stadio Comunale di Monigo (2011) and Newlands (2012).

A total of 50 tries have been scored across the 10 JWC semi-finals to date. Thirty-two of these have been turned into seven pointers.

The most tries scored in a semi-final is six, which has happened three times – New Zealand v Australia (2009), England v South Africa (2009) and England v France (2011).

The most penalties kicked in a semi-final is seven in England’s victory over South Africa in 2009, the fewest is two in that year’s other encounter between New Zealand and Australia.

No drop goals have been slotted between the posts in a semi-final to date.

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  1. Ludicrous… Pollard is no inside centre… but they have no other options after bringing far too many Orcs!

  2. I caught the 2nd half of this game and it seemed the Welsh tactic was to kick in behind the wings. They found oodles of space and in the end won the game because of it. They must have studied those back 3 everyone was waxing on about last week and saw something you guys missed.

    The same thing you guys are missing about Kirchner. Where-ever the ball comes down, he’s there to catch it.
    Positional play for a full-back is fundamental, if you don’t have that, you have nothing

  3. We lost this match due to unforced errors.. We had 64% of posession and messed up so many chances it easn’t funny.

    Handre Pollard was poor in the Tournament, he missed 3 penalties as well.

    Wales used their scrums to gain penalties the whole match, what the hell is going on in our front rows. It has been a problem for some time now, aren’t there any quality front row coaches in SA, it is quite pathetic.

  4. Agree about the scrums – and I rated Dawie as a great frontrower. We completely disintegrated. Skills of forwarda were poor – our no 8 and captain was slow, lost the ball in every contact and cannot pass. Steriods will not win you matches.