Boks and All Blacks get ready to battle
The teams will meet in their second match in the Rugby Championship.
CAPE TOWN - The Springboks and New Zealand will do battle for the 90th time when they face off in their second match in the Rugby Championship at Emirates Airline Park in Johannesburg on Saturday.
The reigning world champions from the land of the long white cloud have been far superior in this fixture, which dates back to August 1921 when they met in Dunedin for the first time.
There have been more memorable meetings since that day - which includes the Springboks' historic win in the final of the 1995 World Cup.
This year marks 20 years since the Springboks won the World Cup for the first time - and this weekend they meet at the very same venue which put 'Amabokke-bokke' on the world rugby map.
The Boks have won this encounter on 35 occasions, including last year's last-gasp 27-25 win in Johannesburg, courtesy of a Pat Lambie penalty at the death.
The All Blacks have come out tops 51 times, and they'll be confident of extending that record, but the Boks are seeking back-to-back wins over their rivals for the first time since 2011.
Heinrich Brüssow will make his first start for the Springboks since the 2011 Rugby World Cup, while Vincent Koch has been included on the bench for what could be his Test debut for South Africa.
Schalk Burger will captain the team from number eight and be the Boks' 55th skipper.
Francois Louw will start in the number seven jersey for the injured Marcell Coetzee in a positional change, with Brüssow assuming the openside role. The only other change to the starting line-up is at lock, where Lood de Jager takes over from Victor Matfield.
"Injuries have forced our hand a bit, but we've stuck with our planned rotational policy on the bench and it will be great to see what Heinrich, Vincent and Flip can do," said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.
"Heinrich has been great this season before he got injured and played his way into contention. As with other players returning from injury in Vodacom Super Rugby, he deserves an opportunity. We decided it was better to start with him and use Warren as an impact player later in the match.
Meyer said that the Springboks faced a huge challenge on Saturday as they continue to build towards the Rugby World Cup against a fired-up Kiwi side.
"This will be a massive Test - every match against the All Blacks is," said Meyer.