AUDIO: Stormers' prodigy leads Junior Boks against Georgia
WORLD CUP UNDER-20 SPOTLIGHT: Coach Chean Roux has announced his team to play a friendly against Georgia at the Markötter Stadium in Stellenbosch on Friday evening.
Salmaan Moerat, a former captain of South African Schools will captain the team.
The match is seen as a warm-up for World Rugby's Under-20 championship which will be played in France from May 30 to June 17. The venues are in France's south west - at Stade Aimé Giral in Perpignan, Stade de la Méditérranée in Béziers and the Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l'Amitié in Narbonne.
This warm-up match is all the more relevant as the South Africans will play Georgia in their opening match in France next month.
The championship has been played 10 times. South Africa won in 2012, were runners-up in 2014 and came third six times, including in 2017 in Tbilisi, Georgia.
There are five players who played for SA Under-20 last year - Salmaan Moerat, Gianni Lombard, Wandisile Simelane, Rewan Kruger and Muller Uys.
In addition, Moerat, of the famous Paarl rugby family, has had a game for the Stormers in Super Rugby.
The flyhalf, Lubabalo Dobela of Grey Port Elizabeth, has been a star for the Shimlas in the Varsity Cup.
The match 23 features a total of 12 former SA Schools players - Gianni Lombard (Paarl Boys' High), Wandisile Simelane (Jeppe), Rikus Pretorius (Grey College), Sihle Njezula (Grey High), Rewan Kruger (Grey College), Muller Uys (Paarl Gim), PJ Steenkamp (Garsfontein), Salmaan Moerat (Paarl Boys' High), 3 Sazi Sandi (St Andrew's College), Nkosikhona Masuku (Parktown), JC Pretorius (HTS Middelburg) and Phendulani Buthelezi (DHS).
Roux said: “Unfortunately a few players in the expanded squad are nursing injuries, while Damian Willemse and Muller du Plessis are unavailable because of their commitments with the Stormers and Blitzboks respectively. But we have another match with Georgia next week, and we hope to have some of them back.”
South Africa Under-20: 15 Gianni Lombard (Golden Lions), 14 Tyrone Green ((Golden Lions), 13 Wandisile Simelane (Golden Lions), 12 Rikus Pretorius (Western Province), 11 Sihle Njezula (Western Province), 10 Lubabalo Dobela (Free State), 9 Rewan Kruger (Free State), 8 Muller Uys (Western Province), 7 PJ Steenkamp (Golden Lions), 6 Dian Schoonees (Golden Lions), 5 Ruan Nortjé (Blue Bulls), 4 Salmaan Moerat (Western Province) (captain), 3 Sazi Sandi (Western Province), 2 Schalk Erasmus (Western Province), 1 Alulutho Tshakweni (Eastern Province)
Replacements: 16 PJ Botha (Golden Lions), 17 Nkosikhona Masuku (Golden Lions), 18 Cohen Kiewit (Golden Lions), 19 JC Pretorius (Blue Bulls), 20 Phendulani Buthelezi (Sharks), 21 Zak Burger Sharks), 22 Abner van Reenen (Western Province), 23 Lyle Hendricks (Western Province).
Georgia Under-20 squad: Gela Aprasidze, Mikheil Babunashvili, Demur Epremidze, Otar Giorgadze, Luka Goginava, Beka Gorgadze, Sandro Iluridze, Giorgi Javakhia, Guram Kandaurashvili, Giga Khuroshvili, Giorgi Koshadze, Giorgi Kveseladze, Vasil Lobzhanidze, Tornike Mataradze, Giorgi Melikidze, Sandro Merkvilishvili, Davit Meskhi, Lado Miminoshvili, Mirian Modebadze, Davit Modzghvrishvili, Nika Neparidze, Lasha Sajaia, Ilia Spanderashvili, Irakli Svanidze, Rati Shanidze, Lasha Tabidze, Irakli Tskhadadze, Giorgi Tsutskiridze
Referee: Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa)
The match kicks off at 16.00 and entrance is free.