Host nation Japan has a tall order ahead if they are to continue their World Cup fairytale as they meet South Africa for a place in the last four in Tokyo on Sunday.

The Brave Blossoms will be looking to call on the spirit of 2015 as they look for an upset that would surpass even their miraculous victory over the Springboks in Brighton four years ago.

A bonus-point win over Scotland on the final day of the pool stage saw Japan finish top of Group A, avoiding a clash with New Zealand in the process.

South Africa’s only defeat in the tournament so far came against the All Blacks, but they have won three on the bounce since then, and are currently second-favorites to win the entire competition.

South Africa have reverted back to the team that trounced Italy two weeks ago.

The Springboks – revealing their line-up a day earlier than expected – switch to a more familiar starting XV after making 13 changes for the 66-7 thrashing of Pool B minnows Canada in Kobe.

Only captain Siya Kolisi and inside centre Damian de Allende retain their starting berths following that match.

Rassie Erasmus opts for a monster pack with only two backs on the bench as he looks to nullify Japan’s pace.



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