Springboks lose Bekker to injury
July 19, 2010
Andries Bekker has been ruled out of the Springboks' meeting with Australia © Getty Images
South Africa will be without lock Andries Bekker when they look to get their Tri-Nations campaign back-on-track against Australia in Brisbane on Saturday.
The Stormers second-row picked up a back injury in last weekend's demoralising 31-17 loss to the All Blacks in Wellington. He will now return to South Africa for treatment on what is described as an 'acute disc injury'.
Bulls lock Flip van der Merwe will likely step onto the bench, having been called in to replace the suspended Bakkies Botha, with Danie Rossouw and Victor Matfield continuing as the starting second-row combination.
"It is a setback but we will have to deal with it," Springbok coach Peter De Villiers said. "That is part of the game. We have to rely on the strength within our squad for the Test. It is a blow for Andries too as he was just coming back from a previous injury."
Jean de Villiers will also miss the game due to a two-week suspension handed down for a dangerous tackle, but the rest of the squad is fit and ready for training.
"As expected there are a few niggles but it is good news for us that we came away from Wellington with just a single serious injury and can assemble a strong line-up for the Brisbane Test," De Villiers added.
"If I miss the first kick of the match, it shouldn't have any impact on the second. They are different entities." Tom Hamilton talks to Northampton Saints' Stephen Myler
It's time for those running Welsh rugby to stop trying to prevent its players heading to France and to start planning a future without them, writes Martin Williamson
Paul Eddison explains how the French sold English clubs down the river and why their domestic game will go from strength to strength
'Nothing can prepare you for the noise of the Millennium Stadium though, you just can't hear anything." Tom Hamilton talks to Cory Allen