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Rugby World Cup: South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer is calling on his side to Boks clever

ByStaff Reporter

South Africa will book a World Cup quarter-final place if they beat the United States today - 18 days after being victims of the tournament's greatest upset.

The Springboks have recovered solidly from losing 34-32 to Japan in Brighton, amassing 80 points and scoring nine tries as they claimed emphatic victories over Samoa and Scotland.

And a win is all they need at the Olympic Stadium to guarantee topping Pool B, confirming a last-eight appointment with Australia or Wales.

Coach Heyneke Meyer has made two injury-enforced changes from the team that defeated Scotland, with wing Lwazi Mvovo replacing JP Pietersen and prop Frans Malherbe handed a start instead of Jannie du Plessis. Ulster's Ruan Pienaar has been left out of the match-day squad.

Meyer said: "There are so many examples of comebacks throughout the world, of things that people said could never happen.

"They said the mile would never be run in under four minutes, and now everybody's running under four minutes.

"I am a very positive person. I believe anything is possible, and I have been in situations where I've lost every single game, come back and won trophies. But we won't look past this game."

Wing Bryan Habana added: "We always have dreams and goals of achieving success at this World Cup.

"We believe if we are going to get to the next stage, we are going to have to improve."

USA head coach Mike Tolkin retains just three players - skipper Manu Samoa, hooker Phil Thiel and full-back Blaine Scully - who were on starting duty last time out against Scotland, with one eye on Sunday's clash with Japan in Gloucester.

Pool B: Olympic Park, London 4.45pm (ITV)

South Africa


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