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Heyneke Meyer announces Springbok Rugby World Cup squad

Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has announced the 31 men who will carry South Africa's hopes in England.

LEADING MAN: Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has named his 31-man squad which will compete at the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England.

JOHANNESBURG - Below are the names of the men who will carry a nation's hopes at the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England next month.

Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has named his 31-man squad which will compete to win South Africa's third World Cup tournament, following victories in 1995 and 2007.

Meyer has seemingly opted for experience, with scrumhalf Rudy Paige the only uncapped player selected.

The squad will, as expected, be led by Jean de Villiers, who is still recovering from the broken jaw he suffered in his side's shock loss to Argentina at the beginning of the month.

One of the biggest talking points is likely to be the selection of Morné Steyn, with the flyhalf having last played in the green and gold in September last year when the Boks lost to the Wallabies in Perth. Other players included who haven't featured much over the past twelve months are fullback Zane Kirchner, Fourie Du Preez and Schalk Brits.

The loose-forward battle was always going to be a closely fought affair, with Meyer ultimately opting for Duane Vermeulen, Willem Alberts, Francois Louw, Schalk Burger and Siya Kolisi, meaning that the likes of Bok regulars Marcell Coetzee and Oupa Mohoje will miss out.

Meyer says Heinrich Brussouw and Marcell Coetzee are on standby in event of injury to one of the loose forwards.

De Villiers, speaking after the announcement, said the team's focus was on the upcoming tournament.

"A lot has been said about my past, but I'm focused on the future. The coach has selected 31 quality players," said the captain.

He added: "We owe it to all our supporters to make our country proud."

Backs:

Willie le Roux; Zane Kirchner; Bryan Habana; JP Pietersen; Lwazi Mvovo; Jean de Villiers (capt); Damian de Allende; Jesse Kriel; Handré Pollard; Pat Lambie; Morné Steyn; Fourie du Preez; Ruan Pienaar; Rudy Paige.

Forwards:

Duane Vermeulen; Francois Louw; Willem Alberts; Schalk Burger; Siya Kolisi; Victor Matfield; Eben Etzebeth; Pieter-Steph du Toit; Lood de Jager; Bismarck du Plessis; Adriaan Strauss; Schalk Brits; Tendai Mtawarira; Jannie du Plessis; Trevor Nyakane; Frans Malherbe; Coenie Oosthuizen.

What do you think about the Bok squad? Leave your thoughts in the comment box below.

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