South Africa

More Boks bite the dust

Wed, 17 Oct 2012 12:14
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I just think it is freakish
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"Freakish" Injuries to Andries Bekker and Tiaan Liebenberg have left the Boks even thinner on resources for the year-end tour of Europe.

Both Western Province tight forwards have been ruled out of action for the rest of the year with what Allister Coetzee described as "freakish" injuries, and they have been joined on the sidelines by skipper Jean de Villiers, although he is not considered doubtful for the Springboks' year-end tour of Ireland, Scotland and England next month.

Bekker injured his big toe in the first half of the clash with the Cheetahs at Newlands last week and will take at least six weeks to recover, whilst Liebenberg has a back injury that will keep him out for eight weeks.

Coetzee was quick to point out that neither injury is a result of playing too much rugby, as both players had a limited role in the Boks' Rugby Championship campaign.

"Tiaan's injury is from a knock he took on the weekend and then with Andries anyone could have stood on his toe.

"Just for the record Tiaan played 26 minutes from a possible 400 minutes in the Rugby Championship, so it has nothing to do with overplay. Likewise Bekker played 280 minutes from a possible 400 minutes so I just think it is freakish," he said.

De Villiers went for scans on a troublesome hamstring which he first tweaked in the build-up to the Boks' final Rugby Championship match against the All Blacks, and has been ruled out for three weeks with a Grade One tear.

After consultation with the WP team doctor, Dr Arthur Williams, and further advice from a specialist, De Villiers will play no further part in the Currie Cup.

These setbacks will add to the stress levels of Bok coach Heyneke Meyer who has seen key players such as Pierre Spies, Bismarck du Plessis, Frans Steyn, Johan Goosen and Coenie Oosthuizen fall by the wayside in his first year at the helm.

With so many influential players unavailable due to injury, Meyer may have to call gamble on a taking a severely inexperienced squad to Europe or call on yet more reinforcements from overseas.

By Michael de Vries

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