What are we going to be doing differently this week that we didn’t do last week?
The answer to that is ‘to ring the changes’ which is a 17th century term (related to bell ringing in belfry’s) that means to employ alternative methods.
The selectors have finally decided to employ alternative players and dumped some under-performers.
The casualties are Dean Mumm, Richard Brown and Saia Faingaa. Two of the three have been copping criticism for quite some time for a lack of form and impact.
I think the changes are deserved – I mean, what have we got to lose. Let’s give some other fellas a go to see if we can come up with the right combo.
It’s a shame that Salesi Ma’afu didn’t get the axe as well but I’d imagine this will be his last chance. Word is that James Slipper will be getting plenty of game time.
Stephen Moore has returned to his rightful hooking spot. He should have been in the run-on side last week because he thrives on this type of game.
A strong scrummager and ball runner around the ruck, the fact that he didn’t get on at the death last week was a coaching snafu.
It’s a shame for Faingaa who has been a bit of a find this year but he’ll be getting plenty more opportunities for the Wallabies down the track.
Ben McCalman deserves his start as well. An up and coming and aggressive young loose forward, he’s a ball of energy and you could see his potential in Force matches earlier in the season.
Mark Chisholm has been tried before with mixed results. He’s a capable lineout forward but sometimes has difficulty injecting himself into a game.
If we’re going to be playing a similar fast-paced game as last week then I think he’s worth a go because mobility is one of his strengths.
Tactically, I don’t think the Wallabies will offer much variation from last week – and rightly so – although you’d think that running the ball from inside your 22 may not necessarily be the answer every time?
Robbie said that the altitude had no effect on the players last week. You could have fooled me because some of them looked out on their feet towards the end.
Bloemfontein is also on the highveld so here’s hoping for a better outcome with the use of the bench.
South Africa has made one change and replaced Flip van der Merwe with Danie Roussow and Gio Aplon on the bench for an injured Butch James.
I have a better feeling about this test match than I did before last weeks.
I think the Wallabies will be particularly dirty on themselves that they missed an opportunity and will be highly motivated to make amends. (I’m trying to be more positive) Wallabies by 3.
Kurtley Beale, James O’Connor, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Matt Giteau, Drew Mitchell, Quade Cooper, Will Genia, Ben McCalman, David Pocock, Rocky Elsom (c), Nathan Sharpe, Mark Chisholm, Salesi Ma’afu, Stephen Moore, Benn Robinson.
Reserves: Saia Faingaa, James Slipper, Dean Mumm, Richard Brown, Luke Burgess, Berrick Barnes,Anthony Faingaa.
Francois Steyn, JP Pietersen, Jaque Fourie, Jean de Villiers, Bryan Habana, Morne Steyn, Francois Hougaard, Pierre Spies, Juan Smith, Schalk Burger, Victor Matfield, Danie Rossouw, Jannie du Plessis, John Smit (c), Gurthro Steenkamp.
Reserves: Chiliboy Ralepelle, CJ van der Linde, Flip van der Merwe, Ryan Kankowski, Ricky Januarie, Juan de Jongh, Gio Aplon.