Friday, 26 June 2009

Teams for 2nd British Lions test

The teams have been announced for what should be a humdinger of a match between the British Lions and the Springboks at Loftus Versveld on Saturday. The second test of the three test series on this 2009 British Lions tour, it is a must-win for the Lions to keep their dream alive. The Springboks on the other hand have the opportunity to secure the series. So there's all to play for!

Springbok team

The Springboks have opted for a largely unchanged team, as you would expect after last week's victory. Schalk Burger comes into the match-day XV in place of Heinrich Brussow, who drops down onto the bench. Brussow played very well in the last match, and may feel a little aggrieved at having to make way for Burger; however I'm sure we'll seem him come on in the second half. Burger on the other hand will be looking for a big performance to cement his place in the team after being out with injury for awhile.

15. Frans Steyn
14. JP Pietersen
13. Adi Jacobs
12. Jean de Villiers
11. Bryan Habana
10. Ruan Pienaar
9. Fourie du Preez
8. Pierre Spies
7. Juan Smith
6. Schalk Burger
5. Victor Matfield
4. Bakkies Botha
3. John Smit (Captain)
2. Bismarck du Plessis
1. Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira

Reserves: Chiliboy Ralepelle, Deon Carstens, Andries Bekker, Danie Rossouw, Heinrich Brussow, Jaque Fourie, Morne Steyn

British Lions team

The Lions have made a number of changes, as you would expect. Rob Kearney replaces injured fullback Lee Byrne, and Ugo Monye makes way for Luke Fitzgerald. Many thought that Shane Williams may have done enough on Tuesday to get a start, but he is on the bench.

But the "bulk" of the changes are in the pack: Simon Shaw, Adam Jones and Matthew Rees replace Alun-Wyn Jones, Phil Vickery and Lee Mears respectively. The Lions will be hoping for a far more stable and competitive platform to play from than they achieved last Saturday.

15. Rob Kearney
14. Tommy Bowe
13. Brian O'Driscoll
12. Jamie Roberts
11. Luke Fitzgerald
10. Stephen Jones
9. Mike Phillips
8. Jamie Heaslip
7. David Wallace
6. Tom Croft
5. Paul O'Connell (captain)
4. Simon Shaw
3. Adam Jones
2. Matthew Rees
1. Gethin Jenkins

Reserves: Andrew Sheridan, Ross Ford, Alun-Wyn Jones, Martyn Williams, Harry Ellis, Ronan O'Gara, Shane Williams

Kick-off is at 15:00 local time (14:00 GMT).

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