Frans Malherbe feels privileged to make his debut against Wales
South Africa prop Frans Malherbe says he feels privileged to be making his Springboks debut against Wales.
The 22-year-old Stormers front rower is the only uncapped player in Heyneke Meyer's vastly experienced side for their clash in Cardiff on Saturday.
Malherbe replaces Jannie du Plessis in the Springboks front row after he was ruled out of the tour with a combination of hand and shoulder injuries.
He said: "I actually feel very privileged to play against Wales on my debut, especially in Cardiff at the Millennium Stadium.
"I have never been there, I have watched a lot of Test matches on television and there is an awesome vibe about the place.
"Jannie is a big loss for us, he is veteran of more than 50 tests but I am very honoured to be part of the team."
Malherbe has been called into the senior South Africa squad twice over the last 12 months but has had to be patient for his debut in the green and gold jersey.
Head coach Meyer said he has "no doubts" the young prop is able to make the grade at international level but he faces a baptism of fire against Wales' British and Irish Lions trio of Gethin Jenkins, Richard Hibbard and Adam Jones.
Jenkins is set to win his 99th cap for Wales on Saturday.
"He (Jenkins) is obviously a very experienced player but in my side I also have some very experienced guys around me," said Malherbe.
"Bismarck is one of the best, if not the best, hooker in the world so it's very good for me to work with him.
"I back myself so I am looking forward to the challenge.
"The set piece will be massively important and if we get that right it will have a big influence on the game. "
As the countdown continues for RWC2015, Tournament Chief Executive Debbie Jevans visited the Millennium Stadium to discuss preparations for the eight matches and reveal the positive news that 100,000 tickets for games at the home of Welsh rugby have sold in the last seven days.
Jason Harries is targeting a first win on the World Series circuit this season with Wales. The series returns to action this weekend in Dubai where Harries is part of a team hoping to build from its efforts in round one in October.
Wales skipper Jevon Groves says his side have addressed a few points from Gold Coast and aim to 'hit the ground running' in the next two rounds of the World Series, kicking off with this weekend in Dubai before heading off to South Africa next week.
Wales Sevens manager Steff Thomas is hopeful his side can build from a quarter-final spot in the opening round of the World Series in Australia when his side take part in the forthcoming double header in Dubai and South Africa.