The Rugby Championship - Etzebeth returns to Springboks team for Argentina clash

Mental preparation will be important for the Boks says John Plumtree

Mental preparation will be important for the Boks says John Plumtree

Erasmus has had more time to settle in.

Still, it's far more positive than the dire two years South Africa had under predecessor Allister Coetzee.

Whiteley returns at No 8 following an injury-ravaged 12 months, partnering Bath's Francois Louw and skipper Siya Kolisi in the back row, while Marx is named at hooker after missing the series win over England due to hamstring surgery.

South Africa's forward pack has been bolstered by the return from injury of hooker Malcolm Marx and lock Eben Etzebeth for the Rugby Championship test against Argentina on Saturday.

Springboks to thrash Argentina - bet on it!

Ledesma, like Erasmus a former worldwide player, has been Argentina coach for just over two weeks.

Those gains are tempered by the loss of Duane Vermeulen, who has been allowed to play club rugby in Japan and skip the southern hemisphere championship.

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"The challenge will be pressure and expectation", Erasmus said, "but if he gets through that he is a talent and maybe he can do it for us at the World Cup as a utility player". Now he has gone through the whole of Super Rugby at 10, and a year ago he went through the Currie Cup at 15, so I think he is one of those younger guys who can physically stand up to it, there is no doubting that.

He is one of six changes from the side that lost 44-15 at home to Scotland in June and comes in at tight-head prop in a switch to the front row, with Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro moving to loose-head and Javier Diaz out of the side altogether.

The men tasked with getting the Springboks off to a winning start in this year's Rugby Championship against Argentina, took to Kings Park for the captain's run on Friday. All but one of the Argentina squad for the Rugby Championship play for the Jaguares. He was also Australia's forwards coach in the Rugby Championship from 2015 to the end of last season.

Ledesma adds an air of confidence after leading the Jaguares to the Super Rugby playoffs this season for the first time.

Bryan Habana, part of the side that finished third in England three years ago, says the focus must be exclusively fixed on the impending Rugby Championship, which he believes will give a true indication of what can be expected from the Springboks in Japan next year.

Former captain Warren Whiteley was also recalled at No. 8 and Francois Louw will start at openside flank when the Springboks open their championship in Durban.

Replacements: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Marvin Orie, 20 Marco van Staden, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Lionel Mapoe, 23 Damian Willemse. Reserves: Diego Fortuny, Santiago Garcia Botta, Santiago Medrano, Tomas Lavanini, Tomas Lezana, Martin Landajo, Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, Juan Cruz Mallia.

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