Nienaber and his Springbok coaching staff have emphasised the importance of giving as many players as possible sufficient game time as they look to name the best group of 33 players for the international extravaganza on Tuesday, 8 August. The selection of his squad rubberstamped their plan to spread the load among the players.

The players in the travelling contingent who were involved in the team’s 22–21 victory against the Pumas in Johannesburg earlier on Saturday are Steven Kitshoff, Vincent Koch, Trevor Nyakane (all props), Bongi Mbonambi (hooker), Marvin Orie (lock), Manie Libbok (flyhalf), Kurt-Lee Arendse (wing), Jesse Kriel, Lukhanyo Am (both centres) and Damian Willemse (utility back).

With Willemse fully fit and Handre Pollard well on the mend, Elton Jantjies has been released from the squad.

“Next week’s match is the last opportunity for the players to make a strong statement for selection before we name our Rugby World Cup squad, and we are excited to see what those players will deliver in what is going to be a testing encounter in Buenos Aires,” said Nienaber.

“It’s extremely tough to play there, and Argentina enjoys massive support from their vocal home crowd, so it’s not only going to be a physical test for the players, but a mental one as well.

“Many of these players have received some game time in the last few weeks, while a few could get their first run such as Jean-Luc (du Preez) and Herschel (Jantjies), and we know how important it is for them to grab this opportunity with both hands.”

Nienaber said the players who will not travel to Argentina will remain in Johannesburg where they will train under the watchful eye of SA Rugby Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus and a small group of team management members. The other coaches will accompany the travelling squad to Argentina.

“We are naming the Rugby World Cup squad in a little over a week and it is important that we have a coach that can work on rugby detail with the players remaining in South Africa and who can keep a close eye on the progress the injured players are making,” said Nienaber. “Hence, we decided it would be best for Rassie to work with them.

“Obviously he’ll still assist the team abroad virtually, and vice-versa to ensure that the players here have all the necessary game and conditioning detail they need to tick the boxes we’d like to do with them before we travel to Cardiff for our next warm-up game.”

Nienaber will announce his matchday squad to face Argentina in Buenos Aires on Tuesday.

The Springboks will face Wales in Cardiff (Saturday, 19 August) and New Zealand at Twickenham (Friday, 25 August) in their final warm-up matches before travelling to Corsica for a one-week training camp en route to France for the Rugby World Cup.  

Springbok squad to travel to Argentina:

Props: Thomas du Toit, Steven Kitshoff, Vincent Koch, Gerhard Steenekamp, Trevor Nyakane.

Hookers: Bongi Mbonambi, Joseph Dweba.

Locks: Lood de Jager, Jean Kleyn, Marvin Orie.

Loose forwards: Jean-Luc du Preez, Evan Roos, Jasper Wiese.

Utility forwards: Deon Fourie, Franco Mostert.

Scrumhalves: Jaden Hendrikse, Herschel Jantjies, Cobus Reinach.

Flyhalf: Manie Libbok.

Centres: Lukhanyo Am, Andre Esterhuizen, Jesse Kriel.

Outside Backs: Makazole Mapimpi, Canan Moodie, Kurt-Lee Arendse.

Utility back: Damian Willemse.

Players remaining in South Africa:

Forwards: Pieter-Steph du Toit (loose forward), Eben Etzebeth (lock), Siya Kolisi (loose forward), Frans Malherbe (prop), Malcolm Marx (hooker), Ox Nche (prop), Kwagga Smith (loose forward), RG Snyman (lock), Marco van Staden (loose forward), Duane Vermeulen (No 8).

Backs: Damian de Allende (centre), Faf de Klerk (scrumhalf), Cheslin Kolbe (wing), Willie le Roux (fullback), Handre Pollard (flyhalf), Grant Williams (scrumhalf).