The Springboks have brought out the big guns for their clash against the All Blacks in Wellington on Saturday night.

Springboks coach Rassie Erasmus has made widespread changes to the side that defeated the Wallabies 35-17 in Johannesburg last weekend, with only lock Eben Etzebeth, wing Makazole Mapimpi and flanker Pieter-Steph du Toit retaining their places in the starting XV.

No 8 Duane Vermeulen will take over the captaincy from Etzebeth, who led the team against Australia, with Siya Kolisi still recovering from injury.

The changes don't come as a surprise with Erasmus deciding to split his squad into two groups before the start of the Rugby Championship to prepare better for this week's clash and manage fatigue ahead of the World Cup in September.


Erasmus will be hoping this side, 18 of which featured in the Springboks' 36-34 win over the All Blacks in September last year, will be able to replicate that performance and go back-to-back at Westpac Stadium.

Erasmus says he expects a "huge battle" in Wellington, where the Springboks beat the All Blacks on an away trip for the first time since 2009.

"We have the utmost respect for the All Blacks who are the undisputed No 1 rugby team in the world," he said.

"We know we will have to be at our very best to be competitive against the All Blacks on Saturday and that is why we have sent a group of players in advance to Wellington, so they could acclimatise after the long trip over from South Africa.

"The New Zealanders are a very experienced and settled side while we have some catching up to do in terms of where the two sides are at the moment.

"They are bringing back their Crusaders players, who were all rested after the Vodacom Super Rugby final, so we are in for a huge battle against the best team in the world."

Springboks team: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen (c), 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Steven Kitshoff. Reserves: 16 Bongi Mbonamb, 17 Tendai Mtawarira, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 RG Snyman, 20 Francois Louw, 21 Herschel Jantjies, 22 Frans Steyn, 23 Jesse Kriel.