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Five South Africans in Saracens team for Sharks

Matt Stevens plays for England but was born in Durban South Africa

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Article Published: Thursday 23 January 2014|

Saracens have named five South Africans in their starting team to face the Sharks in their friendly match at Allianz Park on Saturday.

Steve Borthwick will captain the side from lock, and is partnered by England second-rower Mouritz Botha.

In the front row, British and Irish Lions tighthead Matt prop Matt Stevens starts, and is joined by Springbok hooker Schalk Brits and Richard Barrington.

Former Blue Bulls flanker Jacques Burger returns to the side to start in the seven shirt and is joined by former Western Province loose-forward Justin Melck, while experienced former Golden Lions number eight Ernst Joubert is in the back-row.

At half back, South African international Neil de Kock is partnered by the English Premiership's record points scorer Charlie Hodgson, while in the midfield, Argentine international Marcelo Bosch is joined by Fijian flyer Michael Tagicakibau to form an all international centre partnership.

European rugby's leading try scorer David Strettle starts on the left wing and is partnered by 2011 Premiership final match winner James Short on the flanks. US international full-back Chris Wyles makes up the starting XV, playing at full-back.

Saracens team:

Chris Wyles, James Short, Michael Tagicakibau, Marcelo Bosch, David Strettle, Charlie Hodgson, Neil de Kock, Ernst Joubert, Jacques Burger, Justin Melck, Mouritz Botha, Steve Borthwick (captain), Matt Stevens, Schalk Brits, Richard Barrington.

Replacements: Scott Spurling, Nick Auterac, Petrus Du Plessis, Tom Jubb, Takashi Kikutani, Richard Wigglesworth, Duncan Taylor, Sam Stanley.

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