Wales v South Africa: Wing Bryan Habana dropped for Wales game

Byian Habana
Bryan Habana made the first of his 124 South Africa appearances against England in 2004
Under Armour Series: Wales v South Africa
Venue: Principality Stadium Date: Saturday, 26 November Kick-off: 17:30 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC Two & S4C, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app, plus live text commentary

South Africa have made seven changes to face Wales following their historic first defeat by Italy.

Thirty-three-year-old winger Bryan Habana, a 2007 World Cup winner, is among those left out while flanker Willem Alberts has a neck injury.

Backs Johan Goosen, Rohan Janse van Rensburg, Jamba Ulengo, Elton Jantjies and Faf de Klerk all win starting places.

Flanker Uzain Cassiem and prop Lourens Adriansee are the changes up front.

Van Rensburg, Ulengo, and Cassiem will be making their debuts at Principality Stadium, along with forward replacement Jean-Luc du Preez, while the starting three-quarter line have only eight caps between them.

Coach Allister Coetzee admitted it had been a "terrible year" but defended his decision to pick an inexperienced team, saying "the only way is up"

South Africa are fifth in the world rankings going into the match, one place ahead of Wales.

Rookies backed

Coetzee defended the selection of his rookies at a time when his own coaching role is under pressure from poor results in 2016.

"I'm sure they will be up there in the long term and they'll be right up there in 2019.

"You can't go in year three [of the world cup cycle] and think you can change before the world cup.

"It's been a terrible year, it's been a tough year but maybe it's the right time to go that route and get something out of this."

Wales' 2016 autumn internationals
3 NovemberLost 8-32 to Australia
12 NovemberBeat Argentina 24-20
19 NovemberBeat Japan 33-30
26 NovemberSouth Africa

Habana questions

Coetzee faced questions over the future of 2007 World Player of the Year Habana, who is not in the match-day squad despite scoring against Italy.

He says Habana's role was discussed at the start of the year and would be reviewed at the end.

"I wouldn't say this is the end for Bryan Habana, he's got not just a role on the field, but a massive role off the field for South Africa rugby.

"What he's been doing this week to mentor Jamba Ulengo and share his experience, it's important for us."

South Africa: Johan Goosen; Ruan Combrinck, Francois Venter, Rohan Janse van Rensburg, Jamba Ulengo; Elton Jantjies, Faf de Klerk; Tendai Mtawariri, Adriaan Strauss (capt), Lourens Adriaanse, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Lood de Jager, Nizaam Carr, Uzair Cassiem, Warren Whiteley.

Replacements: Malcolm Marx, teven Kitshoff, Trevor Nyakane, Franco Mostert, Jean-Luc du Preez, Piet van Zyl, Pat Lambie, Lionel Mapoe.

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