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Where to watch South Africa vs. Ireland live stream, TV channel, lineups, prediction for international rugby match | Sporting News United Kingdom


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South Africa play their second international rugby match of 2024 having won their second consecutive Rugby World Cup title last autumn in France, and first up the Springboks face the nation they dethroned as the world’s number one side last year — back-to-back Six Nations title winners Ireland.

The Boks began their 2024 campaign in some style against Wales, on neutral ground at Twickenham Stadium in London. Rassie Erasmus’s new-look side were dominant from the outset, scoring five tries in a 41-13 thumping which showed that despite a new year, it’s the same old South Africa who Ireland will be facing at Loftus Versveld in Pretoria.

Ireland, however, come into this tour off the back of two Six Nations titles in two years, only missing out on successive Grand Slams thanks to a narrow 23-22 loss to England in round four this year. To add to that, Andy Farrell’s side have won their last three games in a row against the Springboks, albeit none of which came on South African soil.

The visitors will certainly be hoping to change that in the first of this two-match Test series, and the reduction from the usual three games means this weekend’s first Test is absolutely crucial to deciding the overall outcome. Win, and Ireland need only a draw to claim their first-ever series win in South Africa, but a defeat leaves them staring down the barrel of another disappointing tour.

Ahead of this weekend’s match between the two top-ranked sides in world rugby right now, The Sporting News has all the TV and streaming details for you to follow the action from Pretoria as these top-class teams clash in differing shades of green.

South Africa vs. Ireland date, kick off time

South Africa host Ireland at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria, South Africa in the first Test of Ireland’s two-match 2024 Tour on Saturday, July 6. The game kicks off at 5:00 p.m. local time (SAST).

Here’s how that time translates across some of the major territories:

  Date Kickoff time
UK Saturday, July 6 4:00 p.m. BST
USA Saturday, July 6 11:00 a.m. ET
Australia Sunday, July 7 1:00 a.m. AEST

South Africa vs. Ireland live stream, TV channel

Sky Sports is the home for Rugby Union fans to watch international touring matches this year, and are showing the match live on two of their channels, as well as streaming live and on catch-up via the Sky Go app or a NOW TV pass.

There’s no such terrestrial TV coverage of the match in the US or Australia on this occasion, but fans in both countries can live stream the action via FloRugby and Stan Sport respectively.

  TV channel Streaming
UK Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Action Sky Go Pass, NOW TV
USA FloRugby, FloSports app
Australia Stan Sport

South Africa vs. Ireland lineups, team news

If you thought Rassie Erasmus was going to be ushering in a brand-new era of Springboks after back-to-back World Cup wins, think again — the entire South African starting XV made an appearance in last autumn’s 12-11 victory over New Zealand. After Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu made his debut against Wales, he joins Gerhard Steenkamp and Salmaan Moerat on the bench as the only three players who didn’t feature in last year’s World Cup.

South Africa starting XV: Willie le Roux, Cheslin Kolbe, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Kurt-Lee Arenas, Handre Pollard, Faf de Klerk; Ox Nche, Bongi Mbonambi, Frans Malherbe, Eben Etzebeth, Franco Mostert, Siya Kolisi, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Kwagga Smith.

South Africa replacements: Malcolm Marx, Gerhard Steenkamp, Vincent Koch, Salmaan Moerat, RG Snyman, Marco van Staden, Grant Williams, Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu.

Andy Farrell also names a side packed with title-winning experience in Ireland’s first match since donning the Six Nations crown once more, with only two changes made to the side which started their 17-13 tournament-clinching win over Australia. Both come in the backs, with Craig Casey replacing Jamison Gibson-Park at scrum-half and debutant Jamie Osborne coming in at fullback.

Ireland starting XV: Jamie Osborne, Calvin Nash, Robbie Henshaw, Bundee Aki, James Lowe, Jack Crowley, Craig Casey; Andrew Porter, Dan Sheehan, Tadhg Furlong, Joe McCarthy, Tadhg Beirne, Peter O’Mahony, Josh van der Flier, Caelan Doris.

Ireland replacements: Ronan Kelleher, Cian Healy, Finlay Bealham, James Ryan, Ryan Baird, Conor Murray, Ciaran Frawley, Garry Ringrose.

South Africa vs. Ireland prediction

These two sides have set all the standards at the top level of international rugby in the past few years, and as such choosing a winger between them is far from easy! Ireland have the advantage of having already played five games so far this year – and winning four on their way to a Six Nations title – but South Africa’s first hit-out of 2024 didn’t show any rustiness whatsoever.

Given the Springboks last faced Ireland at the Rugby World Cup, losing 13-8 in a Pool B classic, you might think the form lies with Andy Farrell’s side, but given South Africa have won every game they’ve played since, lifting the Rugby World Cup in the process, we think they’ll just edge what’s set to be another titanic encounter in Pretoria.

Prediction: South Africa to win by less than 10 points.

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