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Botha boost for Boks

Bakkies Botha is ready to give injury-hit world champions South Africa a timely boost by returning to action in Saturday's Pool D clash against Fiji.

The experienced lock missed last weekend's 17-16 victory over Wales because of an Achilles problem, but he will start in Wellington alongside second-row partner Danie Rossouw.

The Springboks, though, will be without lock Victor Matfield, wing Bryan Habana, centre Jean de Villiers and former Bath back Butch James, who are all nursing injuries.

"I will still feel a little bit of stiffness," said Botha.

"But it's like that old farm vehicle in the morning - it smokes a bit but, when you drive it, after an hour, it's hot and it can go.

"I definitely know I am ready for this weekend. I truly believe that when you pull on the green and gold jersey you must give 100%, and that is what I am going to give.

"If my heel is not going to make it, it's not going to make it. If it lasts for 80 minutes, it lasts for 80 minutes."

In the absence of De Villiers, Frans Steyn moves from full-back into midfield alongside Jaque Fourie, with 20-year-old Pat Lambie handed the number 15 shirt for his first World Cup start.


From Belfast Telegraph