Ireland – South Africa – TV information, kick-off, team news

The first of a highly anticipated two-Test series with South Africa begins on Saturday 6 July. Here's everything you need to know about Saturday's highly anticipated Ireland vs South Africa Test match.

This weekend's match will be played at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria, with the second Test a week later at Hollywoodbets Kings Park in Durban as Ireland travel to South Africa for the first time in eight years.

The Springboks won the 2016 series 2-1. The opening Test was Ireland's first victory over the Springboks on South African soil.

Since then, Ireland have won all three meetings between the teams and five of the last seven – most recently a stunning 13-8 victory in France in the group stages of the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

According to reports, this will be South Africa's first appearance with a full team since they were crowned world champions in October.

Andy Farrell's Ireland side have not played since winning the Six Nations against Scotland in March, while South Africa returned to action in June with a comfortable victory over Wales at Twickenham.

An already intense rivalry has intensified in recent months after several South Africans added fuel to the fire in discussions with the media.

Boks player Eben Etzebeth made headlines when he accused Ireland of being “arrogant” by telling South African players after their World Cup group match victory last year: “See you in the final, boys.”

As this is a two-Test tour, the odds of a draw are higher, but if Ireland can replicate the spirit that underpinned their victory over the Springboks in Paris last year at the World Cup, they have a chance.

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When does Ireland play against South Africa?


Ireland vs South Africa takes place this Saturday 6 July at the Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria, kick-off is at 16:00.

Where can you watch Ireland vs South Africa?

The game will be broadcast live via Sky Sports Action. Coverage starts at 3.30pm.

Team News

Springboks coach Rassie Erasmus has named an experienced squad of 20 rugby world champions for the opening test against Ireland.

Twelve of the fifteen starting players for Saturday's clash (six forwards and six defenders) started the 12-11 RWC final win over New Zealand, with the other three (Willie le Roux, Kwagga Smith and Ox Nche) coming off the bench in the final.

The team features eight changes from the team that beat Wales 41-13 in London ten days ago.

Erasmus told the South Africa Rugby website:

“We are fortunate to have great depth in our squad and we are fortunate to have several Rugby World Cup winners in our ranks who know what it takes to play at the highest level and play against the best teams in the world.”

Head coach Andy Farrell has named his Irish match day squad for Saturday’s first friendly against South Africa.

Jamie Osborne will make his international debut and start at full-back, while Craig Casey will play as scrum-half and Robbie Henshaw as midfielder. Garry Ringrose will start on the bench.

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