Jantjies in Newlands comeback?

Tue, 15 Oct 2013 18:00
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Two-Test Springbok flyhalf Elton Jantjies could make an unexpected return to Newlands.

Springbok flyhalf Elton Jantjies could make an unexpected return to Newlands.

The 23-year-old, who has been sidelined with ankle injury since late last month, is rated as a 50-50 chance to feature for the Golden Lions in their Curie Cup semifinal showdown with Western Province in Cape Town on Saturday.

Should he be cleared to play it will be his first return to the iconic Newlands stadium since he played for the Stormers in Super Rugby this year.

Jantjies, capped twice by the Boks last year, was courted by the Stormers for a permanent move to Cape Town.

However, last month he resigned for another two years with the Johannesburg-based franchise - who has since regained their Super Rugby status.

Jantjies was on loan to the Stormers this year, when the Southern Kings displaced the Lions in Super Rugby.

Even after the Lions regained their status as the fifth South African franchise, there were still overtures from Stormers officials to convince Jantjies to return to Cape Town.

However, his return will be in the red-and-white of Lions - either this coming Saturday or next year in Super Rugby.

Lions coach Johan Ackermann confirmed to this website that they are considering Jantjies, but he must first pass a fitness test.

If the Bok is cleared, it will mean Marnitz Boshoff will move to fullback and displace Chrysander Botha in the No.15 jersey.

"We would like to keep Marnitz in the team, by moving him to No.15, as he always gives us that option with his kicking," Ackermann said, adding: "He also has good form at the moment."

The Lions may also be forced into a change at scrumhalf.

"We are waiting on Michael Bondisio, who injured his hamstring [against Griquas] last Saturday," Ackermann told this website.

"He ran at about 70 to 80 percent today [Tuesday] and said it wasn't feeling too bad.

"We will give him a chance till Thursday.

"For the rest it will mostly be the same squad that played [against Griquas] last week."

By Jan de Koning

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