Scotland add Du Preez to their South African list

Sun, 13 Nov 2016 16:30

INJURY UPDATE: Former Junior Springbok and Southern Kings loose forward Cornell du Preez has become the latest addition to Scotland's South African contingent.

Du Preez, 25, has been added to Scotland's squad ahead of their Test against Argentina in Edinburgh on Saturday.

It brings to five the number of South African players or players with strong South African ties.

Top of that list are injured prop Willem Nel (a product of the Free States Cheetahs), former Golden Lions captain Josh Strauss - both who played against the Springboks in a World Cup pool match last year - and one-cap Scotland prop Allan Dell, also a former Baby Bok.

Then there is Stormers centre Huw Jones, with the 22-year-old making his first start for Scotland in their 22-23 loss to Australia at Murrayfield this past weekend.

Du Preez's call-up comes after Scotland's New Zealand flank John Hardie suffered a concussion, as well as a knee and ankle sprain, in the 61st minute of the heartbreaking loss to the Wallabies.

Hardie is now subject to the graduated return to play protocols for his head injury, as well as ongoing rehabilitation and medical management for his leg.

As a consequence of the injuries sustained in the game and the ongoing rehabilitation of Strauss, Scotland have added uncapped Du Preez, to the squad.

The dynamic Edinburgh back row forward is equally at home on either flank or at No.8 and has been a consistent performer for the capital club, scoring 13 tries in his 66 appearances.

Born and schooled in Port Elizabeth, Du Preez is available for selection having qualified for his adopted country through residency - only last month.

Other injury concerns for Scotland ahead of their encounter with Argentina's Pumas include Ryan Wilson, who suffered a laceration to his ankle in the fifth minute of the match - which required medical attention at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary. He re-joined the team after the match.

Lock Richie Gray underwent a head injury assessment in the 12th minute and returned to the field.

He must now complete the third part of the HIA process on Monday (48-hours post-match) to be considered available for this Saturday's Test match against Argentina in Edinburgh.

Meanwhile, Scotland coach Vern Cotter praised his players after the loss to the Wallabies, but said his side 'didn't get the rub of the green'.

Both Cotter and Scotland captain Greig Laidlaw were critical of referee John Lacey, with Laidlaw saying Lacey 'turned on' his side in the second half.

The Scots ended up on the wrong side of a 12-9 penalty count and Cotter said he felt there were some decisions that went the wrong way.

"I'm proud of the way the players played that game," he said.

"There are things we can control and things we can't control. We focus on the ones we can, we take out a pretty good performance.

"The players played with immense courage, threw themselves at it and I just think we didn't get the rub of the green at times."

Laidlaw said he felt there were a number of decisions that unfairly went the way of the Wallabies but admitted his side needed to tidy up its discipline as well.

"He certainly turned on us in the second half for whatever reason, Vern's mentioned the penalty count so we just need to be smarter on that because we just let them take the scoreboard a little bit," he said.

"I think when you go back and look at a few decisions, [we were] probably harshly penalised on a few occasions.

"There were a couple of times where we kicked the ball out and I reckon we probably should've just kicked long and tried to get the chase, rather than give them set piece in our half," he said.

"That's what we're looking at, so we just needed to grab a bit of field position but it [the turning point] was probably some ill-discipline and fewer decisions went our way."

While Cotter was clearly unhappy with some of the officiating after an agonising loss, he said the team wouldn't be dwelling on it.

"I think there were eight penalties against us in the second half, maybe two for us.

"There were a number of things there. Like I say, that is something we can't focus on.

"The most important thing for us is to go back and analyse it tomorrow [Sunday]".