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Moerat starts at lock in Junior Bok semi-final

Springboks

Salmaan Moerat will start at lock against England in the only change to the Junior Springbok starting team for Tuesday’s World Rugby Under-20 Championship semi-final.

Moerat replaces Hendré Stassen, who is nursing a knee injury, and he will pair up with Ruben van Heerden in the engine room.

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Junior Springbok captain Ernst van Rhyn and English counterpart Zach Mercer pose with the World Under-20 trophy. Photo: Supplied

There are also two changes among the replacements from the team that beat Argentina last Thursday, with prop Lee-Marvin Mazibuko replacing Wikus Groenewald, who has the flu, while Reinhard Nothnagel will provide back-up for Moerat and Van Heerden.

“We looked at England’s strengths and we think these are the best combinations for us for the semi-final,” coach Chean Roux said about his team selection.

Roux said he is expecting a physical onslaught from England, who are the defending champions, but added his team’s focus was on delivering a quality performance to advance to the final.

England defeated Ireland 45-21 in last year’s final in Manchester to win the competition.

“This is a big game for us,” said Roux.

England are a physical side and they are full of confidence. They are the defending champions as well. But that said, our plans are in place as a team, and we just need to go out there and execute it.”

The semi-final will be hosted at the M. Meskhi Stadium in Tbilisi at 4pm (SA time) and will be broadcast live on SuperSport 1 (Channel 201).

New Zealand will face France in the second semi-final, which starts at 6.30pm (SA time).

Junior Springbok Team

15 Manie Libbok, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Wandisile Simelane, 12 Damian Willemse, 11 Gianni Lombard, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Juarno Augustus, 7 Ernst van Rhyn (captain), 6 Len Massyn, 5 Ruben van Heerden, 4 Salmaan Moerat, 3 Carlü Sadie, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Kwenzo Blose.

Bench: 16 Gerhard Steenekamp, 17 Daniel Jooste, 18 Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, 19 Reinhard Nothnagel, 20 Muller Uys, 21 Francois de Villiers, 22 Stedman Gans, 23 Jeanluc Cilliers.

SA Rugby

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