South Africa have changed eight of the team humiliated at home by Argentina last weekend for a Test rematch in Buenos Aires on Saturday.

In come full-back Zane Kirchner, winger Lwazi Mvovo, fly-half Patrick Lambie, front rowers Trevor Nyakane, Adriaan Strauss and Marcel van der Merwe, lock Victor Matfield and loose forward Willem Alberts.

And out go injured quintet Willie le Roux, skipper Jean de Villiers, Vincent Koch, Lood de Jager and Marcell Coetzee, plus Handre Pollard, Tendai ‘The Beast’ Mtawarira and Bismarck du Plessis.

There is also one positional switch with Jesse Kriel moving from the right wing to outside centre, where he scored tries against Australia and New Zealand in other Rugby Championship games.

It is the final Test for both countries before naming 31-man squads for the Rugby World Cup, which kicks off on September 18 in England.

Veteran lock Matfield leads the side in the absence of injury-plagued centre De Villiers, who fractured his jaw during the 37-25 loss to the Pumas, but will be available for World Cup selection.

It was the first time the Springboks lost to the South Americans in 20 Tests and the most embarrassing defeat for the green and gold since a 49-0 meltdown in Australia nine years ago.

Powerful scrummaging in Durban was a major contributor to one of the greatest Argentine rugby triumphs.

South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer has reacted by choosing a new front row, bringing in props Nyakane (loosehead) and van der Merwe (tighthead) and hooker Strauss.

Durban tighthead Koch, who would surely have been axed had he not been injured, was brutally exposed in the set pieces by veteran Argentine Marcos Ayerza.

Another change that came as no surprise was at fly-half with Lambie getting his first start of the season in place of Pollard. 

Nothing went right for Pollard last weekend and a performance-to-forget ended with the playmaker being booed by the crowd after a kick-off went directly into touch.

The return after a lengthy injury of Alberts will be welcomed by Meyer, who lamented the lack of ball carriers against the Pumas.

Kirchner, who plays for Irish province Leinster and has long been admired by Meyer for his fielding of high kicks, gets a chance at full-back after a long Test absence.    

South Africa are in Pool B at the World Cup with Japan, Samoa, Scotland and the United States, while Argentina are in Pool C alongside Georgia, Namibia, title-holders New Zealand and Tonga.


Team (15-1)

Zane Kirchner; Lwazi Mvovo, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Bryan Habana; Patrick Lambie, Ruan Pienaar; Schalk Burger, Willem Alberts, Heinrich Brussow; Victor Matfield (capt), Eben Etzebeth; Marcel van der Merwe, Adriaan Strauss, Trevor Nyakane

Replacements: Schalk Brits, Tendai Mtawarira, Frans Malherbe, Flip van der Merwe, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Cobus Reinach, Handre Pollard, Jan Serfontein

Coach: Heyneke Meyer

Agence France-Presse

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