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Botha could miss Wales clash

Veteran Bakkies Botha is a doubt for South Africa's World Cup opener against Wales in Wellington on Sunday.

The big lock has an Achilles injury and should he be ruled out of the Pool D clash, Danie Rossouw is expected to slot in alongside Victor Matfield.

Number eight Pierre Spies said: "Bakkies is a person you always miss in his special way. For us, it's just important to keep the routine of the team going. We'll have Danie Rossouw coming in if Bakkies is not ready, and Danie is also an exceptional player."

He added: "He is very similar to Bakkies, which is great for us. We will just stick to the way we play and keep going with it. We won't change our plans."

There has been plenty of talk about the need for discipline at the breakdown, however, particularly given that International Rugby Board referees' boss Paddy O'Brien has highlighted it as an area the officials need to enforce more stringently during the tournament.

"We can speak about it as much as we want but it's how the ref interprets it on the day," said Spies. "In the end you just want consistency from both sides and from the ref."

England's Wayne Barnes is in charge of Sunday's game.

Spies continued: "He lets the breakdown go a bit more. It all depends on how you adapt to it. We haven't had Wayne in our build-up to the World Cup but we have played with him (in charge before). We'll just see how it goes on the weekend."

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