Eben Etzebeth to lead South Africa in Rugby Championship opener against Australia

Etzebeth will lead the boks against Australia

Etzebeth will lead the boks against Australia

The Wallabies open their worldwide program with an offshore Test for the first time in 35 years, against the Springboks in Johannesburg.

The Wallabies will have double Jantjies trouble after Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus selected Elton and Herschel for Saturday's Rugby Championship opener at Ellis Park.

Eben Etzebeth will captain the side in Siya Kolisi's absence.

The Rugby Championship, usually a two-round competition also involving Argentina and New Zealand, has been shortened to one round because the Rugby World Cup kicks off on September 20.

Aphiwe Dyantyi also was not considered for selection because of a hamstring injury. It will be Etzebeth's 12 Test as Bok captain.

"We're blessed with a number of quality props in South Africa. and guys like Wilco Louw, Coenie Oosthuizen and even the Lions' Dylan Smith aren't here, and they all played well in Super Rugby", said Erasmus.

Four further overseas-based men are on the bench - Montpellier-based Francois Steyn, Cobus Reinach of Northampton, Ulster's Marcel Coetzee and Saracens' Vincent Koch, who Erasmus said had to show they're good enough for Test rugby.

AFCON: Tunisia faces Nigeria in third place play-off
An early tap in from tournament top scorer Odion Ighalo was one of the few bright moments in a game that failed to catch fire. It has been a good tournament for Nigeria as they have beaten teams like South Africa and Cameroon.

Lizo Gqoboka, also uncapped and named among the replacements, is in line to make his first appearance for South Africa from the bench.

"We want to win the Rugby Championship and we have a specific plan, which starts Saturday with the first test against the Wallabies", Erasmus said in a media release from SA Rugby.

Erasmus said that he was excited for the start of the worldwide season, and each of the three Rugby Championship Tests were vital ahead of the Rugby World Cup.

South Africa are as good as any side in the world on their day and the return of utility back and 2007 World Cup victor Frans Steyn to the squad for the first time in two years is a boost for their depth.

"Australia have prepared very well for this match and they have spent two weeks at altitude to acclimatise to the Highveld, so we are in for a great contest", added Erasmus. Warrick Gelant (Bulls), 14.

Jesse Kriel will lead the back division at 13. Makazole Mapimpi, 10. Elton Jantjies, 9. Herschel Jantjies (Stormers), 8. Pieter-Steph du Toit (Stormers), 6.

Another debutant is 29-year-old Rynhardt Elstadt, who has become a hit in France since moving to Toulouse and completes a loose trio with a distinct punch in the physical stakes. Eben Etzebeth, 3. Trevor Nyakane, 2. Schalk Brits (Bulls), 17.

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