Ireland take on South Africa in the first international since the summer mauling at the hands of the All Blacks, and Declan Kidney will be hoping for a proud and inspired display from his side especially with World Cup seeding at stake.
The former Munster coach will be without the influential quintet of Brian O’Driscoll, Paul O’Connell, Stephen Ferris, Rob Kearney and Sean O’Brien but there’s still be a host of big names on show including a chance for emerging talent Simon Zebo to test his boots in the full back slot and Richard Strauss making his debut at Hooker.
To celebrate the return of international rugby fantasy5live.com has teamed up with frontupRugby.co.uk to offer players the chance to win a stylish rugby polo top. All Fantasy Five Live fans can also get 20% off by using promotional code: f5l20 at checkout when ordering at www.frontup.co.uk (excludes sale items & other promos; valid until 31/12/12).
To win this great prize log onto www.fantasy5live.com and pick five players from the Ireland and South Africa squads, the person with the most points at the end of the 70 minutes will win the prize.
To make your task even easier, we have picked three players that we think will have a big bearing on events on Saturday.
Fantasy5live Three to Watch:
Jamie Heaslip: Donning a “movember” effort that would not be out of place in a holiday romance movie, the Leinster back rower will captain Ireland on his 51st cap. With familiar partners Stephen Ferris and Sean O’Brien out with injury, not only will Heaslip have the unenviable task of filling the shoes of Brian O’Driscoll he will also have to help guide Chris Henry and Peter O’Mahony through their 3rd and 8th caps respectively. That should prove no problem however for the 28 year old Lion who has scored 7 tries in the green of Ireland and his ball carrying skills and breaks will be vital to any Irish success.
Pat Lambie: The versatile 22 year old Sharks Lambie has been handed the number 10 jersey for the clash with Ireland. Lambie has only previously scored 6 points in a Springbok shirt in 17 games although the majority of his time on the field has been at centre or full back. Saturday will be just his second start at number 10 with Heyneke Meyer picking the youngster ahead of Morne Styne and in place of the injured Johan Goosen. South Africa will be hoping that Lambie settles into the role quickly and gets an early chance to kick over a nerve-settling kick.
Simon Zebo: Despite emerging over the last 12 months as a winger of real promise, Zebo will replace the injured Rob Kearney in the full back slot. Thankfully the soon to be two times capped Munster star will have the experience of Tommy Bowe and Andrew Trimble to call upon. Zebo’s coolness under the high ball will be severely tested by the Springboks however they will have worries of their own with the lightning quick 22 year old eager to run at every opportunity. Anyone who witnessed his try in the Heineken Cup clash with Racing Metro will be aware of the lines and speed he can bring to the team.
So why not log onto www.fantasy5live.com and register for the Ireland v South Africa game
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