Venue: Toyota Stadium, Bloemfontein Date: Saturday, July 9 Reset: 16:05 BST
Coverage: Live radio commentary on BBC Radio Wales Extra – available via BBC Sounds, 882 MW and BBC Sport Online, Radio Cymru, as well as live text and match coverage on the BBC Sport website

They say never change the winning side. Well, that mantra was definitely shattered this week in South Africa.

There was already plenty of danger in the second test between Wales and the Springboks in Bloemfontein.

After South Africa’s last win in Pretoria last weekend, Wayne Pivac’s side already knew they needed a win to keep the three-match series alive.

Since Springboks head coach Jacques Nynaber announced on Tuesday that he had made 14 changes to the starting line-up, the build-up has increased.

In all, 19 changes to the 23-man matchday squad fresh from a last-gasp win over Wales.

Opinions were divided. On the one hand, some South African referees think it’s brave and revolutionary to applaud the Springboks for giving in-form players opportunities.

On the contrary, it is disrespectful to their opponents and a devaluation of the series by none other than Wales and British and Irish Lions legend Sir Gareth Edwards.

Whatever your point of view, it certainly brightened the second Test as the series moves to South Africa’s Free State Province.

“Don’t Call Us The B Team”

The resounding message from South Africa is not to call this weekend’s selection a “B” team.

To be fair, the Wales camp didn’t. The term was used at a press conference in South Africa when Ninaber was asked if he would be upset if his team was described in such a negative way.

Wales, who made just one change with Alex Cuthbert replacing Josh Adams, publicly stressed that this South African side will pose as much of a threat as the more established side last week. Criticism came from outside.

Wales has a good relationship with the South African coaching staff. Brewer and team manager Martin Williams dined with his colleagues during a pre-tour break earlier this year.

Although Pivak knew Ninaber was considering changes for the second Test, even he was surprised by how much was announced.

Wales faced a starting side that included 10 World Cup winners last weekend. Tried and trusted combinations that also helped seal a 2-1 series win over the Lions last summer.

Wales face a different challenge this time around as Ninaber is using his full 42-man squad for the first two games.

Lock Eben Etzebet is the only survivor of the Pretoria starting line-up, with Malcolm Marks, Vincent Koch and Damian Willemse named as replacements.

The rest are players given the chance to impress with the World Cup title defense looming on the horizon in France next year.

These are also individuals in uniform. Stormers number eight Evan Roos has been named the United Rugby Championship (URC) player of the season.

Recalled flanker Marcel Coetzee has regularly dominated opposition back rows for Ulster and the Bulls over the past few seasons.

Central “Harlequins” Andre Esterhuizen received the award of the best player of the championship of England. These are just a few examples.

An experienced core remains, with Etzebet winning his 99th cap and 2019 World Rugby Player of the Year Peter-Steph du Toit returning from injury to join Coetzee and Roos in the back row.

Captain Handre Pollard will command the ship as captain and pilot.

“Quiet bullies and inflicting pain”

South African captain Siya Kolisi, who was rested this weekend, admitted Wales got under the skin of the Springboks in Pretoria.

One of the new lads chosen, albeit an experienced prop, Trevor Nyakan, suggested that it wouldn’t happen again.

“I think most teams try to do that when it comes to us,” Nyakan said.

“You can fight fire with fire, but you also have to be smart. You don’t want to be sent off for saying something inappropriate or doing something unbecoming of the Springbok colours.

“It’s going to be tough for us and we know they’re going to try everything they can to do that (get under our skin).

“The only way we know how is to be silent bullies. That’s exactly what we’re going to do.

“We want to hurt them, our physicality. So if they’re going to talk or whatever, we’re going to let them do what they do best, and we’re going to do what we do best.”

The Bloemfontein factor

As for Loftus Versfeld’s passion last weekend, expect something similar in Bloemfontein this weekend, with both games played on a high.

Bloom, known as the City of Roses, is the capital of the Free State Province.

It’s an area Nienaber knows well, having grown up here.

The Toyota Stadium will play host to its first international tournament in four years as England host and fans travel far and wide.

“I’ve been in Bloom for quite a while and it’s been a big part of my life. Bloom has always been kind to us,” Ninaber said.

“When we trained and played here it was always a graveyard for some of the big sides.

“It’s a special and tough place to come and play and it’s always nice to come back.”

Bloemfontein is considered the court capital of South Africa and this Springboks side will be looking to do their own justice this weekend.

The Springboks players called the ground ‘begrafplaas’, which translates to ‘cemetery’, for the opposition sides. Pollard says the aim is to bury Wales’ hopes of a series this weekend.

Wales decided to stay in Johannesburg this week and fly to Bloemfontein just 48 hours before kick-off, a decision which has been questioned by the South African media.

Nyakane, who spent the first four years of his Free State career representing the Cheetahs, described the arena in Bloemfontein as difficult to breathe with little oxygen.

Expect a different hostile environment, but remember that Wales have managed to thrive in the cauldron of Pretoria.

Historical guys?

As the tourists bid to become the first Welsh team to beat the Springboks in South Africa at the 12th attempt after failing in the 11th, there was speculation that Pivaz’s side were in a no-win situation with Ninaber’s selection.

The naysayers say the win is and always will be an asterisk against this game because of the Springboks selection.

Lost and they can’t beat the so called second team South Africa.

The Brewer side won’t believe it, and the old adage remains: you can only beat what’s in front of you.

Sir Gareth wants Wales to set a “good tone” for the Springboks with a revolutionary selection policy.

Any win will put Wales in the spotlight. Then all eyes will be on the person making the decision.

Another defeat for Pivac’s men and it will just be an excuse for South Africa to replace one winning Springboks team with another.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/62049075?at_medium=RSS&at_campaign=KARANGA

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