WELLINGTON, July 24 (Reuters) - Herschel Jantjies’s superb two-try debut for South Africa against Australia last week has propelled the scrumhalf onto the bench for Saturday’s Rugby Championship test against New Zealand.
Jantjies will back up the recalled Faf de Klerk for the clash at Wellington Regional Stadium, which is likely to decide the winner of this year’s southern hemisphere championship after both sides won their opening games last weekend.
“Herschel definitely put up his hand and said ‘listen I can play at this level’ and I think he definitely did that,” coach Rassie Erasmus told reporters on Wednesday after naming his team.
Number eight Duane Vermeulen will lead the side after he missed last week’s 35-17 victory over Australia in Johannesburg, with Erasmus sending an advance party to New Zealand to prepare for the game.
Vermeulen was part of that advance party and Erasmus said he was a natural choice in the absence of regular captain Siya Kolisi, who has been ruled out of the Rugby Championship, and with Eben Etzebeth having played last week.