Decimated WP lose another player

Thu, 09 Aug 2012 19:28
Large jc kritzinger h s 630 Large jc kritzinger ball 630

Western Province, already decimated by injuries and national team call-ups, have lost another key player.

Western Province, already decimated by injuries and national team call-ups, have lost another key player ahead of the opening round of Currie Cup action.

Prop JC Kritzinger, who has had to overcome two serious knee injuries in the last three years that severely limited his game time, has been ruled out of the encounter with the Sharks at Newlands on Saturday.

WP assistant coach Robbie Fleck confirmed to this website that Kritzinger, who was one of two props on the Province bench, injured his ankle at training and once again face a lay-off.

It is not certain if Province will name another prop on the bench, as they still have Brok Harris among the replacements. The additional replacement is expected to be named on Friday.

Fleck bemoaned the rash of injuries that have ripped the heart out of the Cape Town outfit.

"It is not ideal," Fleck told this website, adding: "Steven Kitshoff, Rynhardt Elstadt, JC Kritzinger, Hilton Lobberts,  Michael van der Spuy, Berton Klaasen are all players who were supposed to have been playing for us this weekend and got injured between the Super Rugby semifinal [on Saturday, July 28] and Wednesday [August 8].

"It is just one of those years where we are getting decimated."

To say that WP are 'thin' in terms of depth would be an understatement.

"Last year we had a fair number of players from Dobbo's [John Dobson's WP] Under-21 team we could call on," Fleck said, adding: "We 'stole' three of his centres within the space of two days."

Loose forward and lock remain the WP coaching staff's biggest headache - with Siya Kolisi on Bok duty, Nick Fenton-Wells having joined Saracens in England, while Rynhardt Elstadt, Nick Koster, Schalk Burger, Nizaam Carr and Duane Vermeulen all currently sidelined with injuries.

Burger and Carr will not feature in the Currie Cup at all.

"There is a huge number of injuries and players lost through the season," Fleck said, adding: "That is why retaining the services of [Canadian import] Jebb Sinclair was so massively important to us.

"We were facing real problems there [loose forward].

"We've already had to play a hooker at No.8 and No.6 and it looks as if [hooker] Deon Fourie is going to have to play in that position for the Currie Cup."

Lock is another issue for Province.

"Quinn Roux signing for Leinster [in Ireland] was a big loss.

"It would have been the perfect opportunity to play him as a regular [starter] at No.4 with the view of a Super Rugby berth next year.

"Hilton Lobberts fractured his arm, he is a big loss. Now we are playing Don Armand out of position at lock.

"We had to call on the Under-21 captain Wilhelm van der Sluys to cover there."

In terms of the front row WP didn't lose anybody to Springbok call-ups and most of the guys have been around for a while.

In the backline, according to Fleck, they are also well covered - despite having lost four players to Springboks.

"There's still good young talent coming through," the WP assistant said.

"We've been absolutely hammered at loose forward and lock, but it is something we have to deal with.

"The [WP] camp has camp has moved on from a massively disappointing loss in the [Super Rugby] semifinal and is determined to make things work in the Currie Cup and play some good rugby and win a trophy - the desire and everything is there."

By Jan de Koning

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 09 October 2015
Western Province v EP Kings 16h00 Newlands
Pumas v Blue Bulls 16h00 Mbombela Stadium
New Zealand v Tonga 19h00 Newcastle
Sat, 10 October 2015
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 12h00 Bloemfontein
Samoa v Scotland 13h30 Newcastle
Golden Lions v Griquas 14h00 Ellis Park
Australia v Wales 15h45 London
England v Uruguay 19h00 Manchester
Sun, 11 October 2015
Argentina v Namibia 11h00 Leicester
Italy v Romania 13h30 Exeter
France v Ireland 15h45 Cardiff
United States v Japan 19h00 Gloucester
Wed, 07 October 2015
Namibia v Georgia 16 | 17
South Africa v United States 64 | 0
Tue, 06 October 2015
Fiji v Uruguay 47 | 15
Canada v Romania 15 | 17
Sun, 04 October 2015
Ireland v Italy 16 | 9
Argentina v Tonga 45 | 16
Zebre v Scarlets 8 | 20
Sat, 03 October 2015
England v Australia 13 | 33
Connacht v Cardiff Blues 36 | 31
South Africa v Scotland 34 | 16
Samoa v Japan 5 | 26
Leinster v Dragons 37 | 13
Griquas v Sharks 20 | 45
Pumas v Free State Cheetahs 37 | 37
Fri, 02 October 2015
New Zealand v Georgia 43 | 10
Team P W D L Pts
Golden Lions 9 9 0 0 43
Blue Bulls 9 7 0 2 34
Western Province 9 6 0 3 30
Free State Cheetahs 9 3 1 5 21
Sharks 9 4 0 5 19
Pumas 9 3 1 5 16
EP Kings 9 2 0 7 12
Griquas 9 1 0 8 8