Rugby Championship: Fourie du Preez starts for first time in 2011 against Australia

Last Updated: 26/09/13 10:32pm

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Fourie du Preez: Back in South Africa starting line-up

Fourie du Preez: Back in South Africa starting line-up

Sky Bet

South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer has recalled scrum-half Fourie du Preez for Saturday's Rugby Championship clash with Australia.

Du Preez replaces Ruan Pienaar in the team and makes his first start for the Springboks since 2011.

The only other change to the XV which lost to New Zealand last time out sees hooker Adriaan Strauss replace Bismarck du Plessis.

Du Plessis was controversially sent off in Auckland after picking up two yellow cards. The IRB later ruled that the first yellow - for a tackle on Dan Carter - was an incorrect decision by the referee and the red card has been rescinded.

But Meyer said Strauss will start - with Du Plessis named on the bench - as part of a planned rotation of his hookers.

"Bismark and Ruan always knew they would not play against Australia, there is nothing to be read into that," Meyer said. "I can tell you now that Bismark will be back (on October 5) against New Zealand.

"Fourie is in a class of his own and it's like having another coach on the field, he helps to organises the defence and lead attack. That takes the pressure off (captain) Jean de Villers. I believe Fourie will take us to another level.

Prop Jannie du Plessis and fly-half Morne Steyn will play their 50th Tests at Newlands.

Work ethic

"Steyn is maybe not the most talented player I have ever coached but he has an incredible work ethic and hard work always beats talent," Meyer said.

"I have coached him for 10 years now and if he has missed one training session I don't know about it. He is a great role model to younger players.

"The one area I am very happy with at the moment is the scrummaging, especially compared to last year, and Jannie must take a lot of credit for that," he added.

"He does a lot of work outside of the scrums too; when we analyse matches he is always up there with the most tackles. I believe he is playing great rugby."

South Africa trail defending champions New Zealand by four points with two rounds of the Rugby Championship remaining.

South Africa: 15-Z Kirchner, 14-W le Roux, 13-JJ E, 12-J de Villiers (c), 11-B Habana, 10-M Steyn, 9-F du Preez, 1-T Mtawarira, 2-A Strauss, 3-J du Plessis, 4-E Etzebeth, 5-F van der Merwe, 6-F Louw, 7-W Alberts, 8-D Vermeulen
Replacements: 16-B du Plessis, 17-G Steenkamp, 18-C Oosthuizen, 19-J Kruger, 20-S Kolisi, 21-R Pienaar, 22-P Lambie, 23-J Serfontein.

The game will be shown live on Sky Sports 2HD from 3.15pm on Saturday.

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