Lions suffer Jantjies setback
January 12, 2012
Elton Jantjies was the star player of the 2011 Currie Cup © Getty Images
The Lions will be without star fly-half Elton Jantjies for their entire pre-season after he broke a bone in his hand.
With the Johannesburg-based franchise kicking off their Super Rugby campaign against the Cheetahs on February 25, Jantjies faces a race against time to be fit. The 21-year-old shone for the Golden Lions during the 2011 Currie Cup and played a key role in their triumph over the Natal Sharks in the final as he contributed 24 points towards their 42-16 win.
Ahead of the start of the campaign, the Lions will take part in the Neo Africa Tri-Series in Cape Town, but they will have to make do without Jantjies and coach John Mitchell is still confident of the quality in his squad.
"We're not too bad, we're managing fitness on a number of players," Mitchell said. "Elton has a broken bone in his hand, and we certainly won't risk him in the pre-season games. We will maintain a conditioning focus as we prepare for the season."
The Lions also have concerns over the fitness of prop CJ van der Linde and centre Waylon Murray. Van der Linde, who has a groin injury, hopes to be back in time for the start of the season. Murray, however, looks set for a longer spell out as he tore his knee ligaments falling over in his kitchen.
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