Springboks rocked by Spies blow
August 14, 2012
Pierre Spies will sit out the Rugby Championship © Getty Images
The Springboks have been hit with a massive blow ahead of the Rugby Championship with the news that No.8 Pierre Spies will miss the entire competition.
Spies has suffered a fractured finger with Boks doctor Craig Roberts claiming that "surgical correction is needed in order to prevent permanent damage. The usual rehabilitation time for these kinds of injuries is eight to 12 weeks."
The Boks will not yet replace Spies just yet ahead of their Rugby Championship opener against the Pumas in Cape Town on Saturday, but the news dampen the spirits in the South African camp with coach Heyneke Meyer already having to cope without many of his star back-rowers.
Schalk Burger, Juan Smith and Heinrich Brussow are all out injured while Ryan Kankowski has journeyed to Japan. One other option for Meyer could be to draft in Duane Vermeulen but he will play his first competitive rugby for four months this weekend after a lengthy layoff due to a knee injury.
Boks coach Meyer admitted that Spies' injury is a big "setback". Meyer said: "We have faith in the players in the squad and will consider the call-up of a possible replacement at a later stage.
"Losing Pierre is obviously a setback, because he is the most experienced member of our forward pack, but we will never take any risks with injured players. Injuries are part of the game and this now provides an opportunity for someone else to stake a claim."
In better news for the Boks, lock Eben Etzebeth took part in training on Tuesday with the line up for the first Test to be named on Wednesday.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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
Following a weekend where Wales suffered more heartbreak against Australia and the Aviva Premiership showed its class, the Monday Maul looks back at some of the key talking points