In-form DHL Stormers midfielder Damian de Allende has been forced to withdraw from the Springbok Test squad and will be replaced by Golden Lions flyhalf Marnitz Boshoff.
De Allende, one of seven uncapped players in the Springbok squad, suffered a medial knee ligament injury in the DHL Stormers’ last Vodacom Super Rugby match – their dramatic 21-19 win over the Cell C Sharks in Durban on Saturday.
The 22-year-old DHL WP centre was taken for scans by the Springboks’ medical team on Monday morning and will be sidelined for between four and six weeks, thereby ruling him out of the Castle Lager Incoming Series.
“This is a great setback for Damian and we’re all very disappointed that he won’t be available for the Springboks this month,” said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.
“Damian has been in great form and I was giving serious consideration of using him during the Castle Lager Incoming Series.
“It would have been a special moment for him to make his Springbok debut in front of his home crowd against the World XV at DHL Newlands on Saturday. However, I’m sure he will be back and we wish him well with his recovery.”
Meyer said Boshoff was one of the unlucky players to miss out on selection in the initial squad, which was named on Saturday evening.
“Despite already losing Jean de Villiers and Jaque Fourie to injury, we still have good depth in the midfield, which is why we’ve decided to call up Marnitz,” said the Springbok coach.
“This is a great opportunity for Marnitz, who I’ve known for a number of years. Everyone knows his goalkicking is sublime, but I was very impressed with the way in which he controlled the game in the Lions’ victory over the Vodacom Bulls last weekend.”
Boshoff was part of the Springbok training camp in Durban last weekend. He will join the camp in Cape Town on Tuesday morning.
* Tickets for Saturday’s match – priced at R250 and R350 for seating and R75 for standing places – are available from PostNet outlets nationwide, the DHL Newlands ticket office or online from www.ticketpros.co.za.
DHL Newlands eason ticket holders had until May 7 to secure their regular seats but you can still contact the WP Rugby ticket office (021-6594600) for further information.
The updated Springbok squad for the Castle Lager Incoming Series 2014 is:
Willem Alberts (Cell C Sharks), Loose forward – 30 Test caps
Marnitz Boshoff (Golden Lions), Flyhalf – 0
Bakkies Botha (Toulon, France), Lock – 78
Schalk Brits (Saracens, England), Hooker – 5
Schalk Burger (DHL Western Province), Loose forward – 68
Marcell Coetzee (Cell C Sharks), Loose forward – 15
Lodewyk de Jager (Toyota FS Cheetahs), Lock – 0
Juan de Jongh (DHL Western Province), Centre – 14
Bismarck du Plessis (Cell C Sharks), Hooker – 57
Jannie du Plessis (Cell C Sharks), Prop – 51
Fourie du Preez (Suntory, Japan), Scrumhalf – 67
JJ Engelbrecht (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Centre/Wing – 12
Johan Goosen (Toyota FS Cheetahs), Flyhalf – 4
Bryan Habana (Toulon, France), Wing – 95
Cornal Hendricks (Toyota FS Cheetahs), Wing – 0
Francois Hougaard (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Scrumhalf – 27
Zane Kirchner (Leinster, Ireland), Fullback – 28
Siya Kolisi (DHL Western Province), Loose forward – 10
Willie le Roux (Toyota FS Cheetahs), Fullback/Wing – 12
Francois Louw (Bath, England), Loose forward – 28
Victor Matfield (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Lock – 110
Oupa Mohoje (Toyota FS Cheetahs), Loose forward – 0
Beast Mtawarira (Cell C Sharks), Prop – 53
Lwazi Mvovo (Cell C Sharks), Wing – 7
Coenie Oosthuizen (Toyota FS Cheetahs), Prop – 14
Ruan Pienaar (Ulster, N Ireland), Scrumhalf – 74
JP Pietersen (Cell C Sharks), Wing – 51
Jan Serfontein (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Centre – 9
S’bura Sithole (Cell C Sharks), Wing/Centre – 0
Gurthrö Steenkamp (Toulouse, France), Prop – 49
Frans Steyn (Cell C Sharks), Utility back – 53
Morné Steyn (Stade Francais, France), Flyhalf – 54
Flip van der Merwe (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Lock – 34
Marcel van der Merwe (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Prop – 0
Duane Vermeulen (DHL Western Province), No.8 – 16
Callie Visagie (Vodacom Blue Bulls), Hooker – 0