New Zealand head coach Ian Foster faces a battle for survival against South Africa in Saturday’s rugby championship (kick-off 16.05 GMT) as he fights for his job after a dismal form.
The All Blacks have lost five of their last six games, have fallen to a record low of fifth in the world rankings and have suffered a first home defeat in the Test series since 1994, when Ireland beat them last month, prompting repeated calls for him has to be axed just 13 months after the start of the World Cup.
New Zealand suffered their heaviest defeat by South Africa in 94 years in their Rugby Championship opener last weekend and the fact that the scoreboard read just 26-10 at the final whistle flattered the All Blacks, although Foster is adamant that his Team will react at Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg.
“We know there’s a lot of pressure on us and we can feel that,” Foster said. “But our job is to look at our performance and how we can improve it. I understand the frustration, but that doesn’t change what we need to do here. There’s no point in sulking about it for too long.”
Here’s everything you need to know about the game:
When does South Africa play New Zealand?
The game will be played at 4:05pm BST on Saturday 13 August at Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Where can I watch it?
The game will be streamed live on Sky Sports Action – coverage starts at 3.55pm. If you’re not a Sky customer, you can grab a NOWTV day pass here to watch without a subscription.
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What’s new from the team?
Jacques Nienaber made four changes to his starting XV as a Springboks weapon for back-to-back wins over the All Blacks. Faf de Klerk was beaten cold in the early stages of last week’s win, so Jaden Hendrikse starts in the scrum half with Jess Kriel on the right wing in place of Kurt-Lee Arendse, who has been suspended for four weeks after his dangerous tackle on Beauden Barrett. Two-thirds of the front row has changed, with Ox Nche and Joseph Dweba starting at Loosehead Prop and Hooker, respectively.
The big news for New Zealand is that Bauden Barrett is surprisingly dropped on the bench while Richie Mo’unga starts at half-time. There are three changes in the pack as props Ethan de Groot and Tyrel Lomax and blindside flanker Shannon Frizell are all promoted after coming on as substitutes last week. Tighthead prop master Fletcher Newell could make his All Blacks debut after being named to the subs.
South Africa: 15 Damian Willemse; 14 Jesse Kriel, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi; 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Jaden Hendrikse; 1 Ox Nche, 2 Joseph Dweba, 3 Frans Malherbe, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 5 Lood de Jager, 6 Siya Kolisi (c), 7 Pieter Steph du Toit, 8 Duane Vermeulen.
Substitute:16 Malcolm Marx 17 Steven Kitshoff 18 Vincent Koch 19 Franco Mostert 20 Jasper Wiese 21 Kwagga Smith 22 Hershel Jantjies 23 Willie le Roux.
New Zealand: 15 Jordie Barrett; 14 Will Jordan, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 David Havili, 11 Caleb Clarke; 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Aaron Smith; 1 Ethan de Groot, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 4 Sam Whitelock, 5 Scott Barrett, 6 Shannon Frizell, 7 Sam Cane (c), 8 Ardie Savea.
Substitute: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 George Bower, 18 Fletcher Newell, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Akira Ioane, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Quinn Tupaea.
South Africa wins – 1/2
Tie – 17/1
New Zealand wins – 15/8
Last week there was little to indicate anything other than another Springboks win, so we’ll say the beleaguered All Blacks slide to yet another defeat that spells the end of coach Ian Foster. South Africa 33-10 New Zealand
Full Rugby Championship TV schedule
South Africa vs New Zealand – live on Sky Sports Action from 15.55 (kick-off 16.05)
Argentina vs Australia – live on Sky Sports Action from 8pm (kick-off 8.10pm)
Australia vs South Africa – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 6:30am)
New Zealand vs Argentina – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 8.45am)
Saturday, September 3rd
New Zealand vs Argentina – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 8.05am)
Australia vs South Africa – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 10.35am)
Australia vs New Zealand – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 10.45am)
Argentina vs South Africa – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 20.10)
New Zealand vs Australia – live on Sky Sports Action (kick-off is 8:05am)
South Africa vs Argentina – Live on Sky Sports Action (kicks off at 16:05)