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Long-awaited RG Snyman comeback has encountered yet another delay

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

The long-awaited return of RG Snyman to action with Munster has again been put on the long finger following their latest squad update ahead of this Friday’s match versus the Lions in the URC. Not since an October 2021 league game against Scarlets has the giant Springboks lock been involved in a match and hopes that he could potentially be included in his Irish club’s busy league and European schedule in January have been dashed by his team’s latest medical bulletin.

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“RG Snyman’s progression has seen him return to field-based rehabilitation and running. He remains unavailable for the upcoming games this month,” read the Munster statement on the South African who has played just four games and 54 minutes since joining the Irish province in 2020.

Set to turn 28 later this month, the ongoing absence of the 2019 World Cup winner has become a massive frustration for Munster given their large financial outlay on Snyman who was recruited by Johann van Graan and was awarded a contract extension last January. That will see him remain until the summer of 2024 with the club that is now coached by Graham Rowntree.

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It was in his debut game for Munster at Leinster in August 2020 when Snyman tore his anterior cruciate knee ligament. Then came the skin graft that was needed to repair fire burn damage following a freak firepit accident in 2021, a setback that was followed by his latest knee injury 15 months ago which cut short his three-game comeback.

The latest Munster update means that the latest projected return of Snyman to play has now been pushed back into his club’s Six Nations window after it had initially been suggested he was potentially in line to make it back by the end of December.

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This latest delay will surely pique the interest of the Springboks, given how they admitted during their recent November tour that they were looking at other options at lock ahead of France 2023 as the 6ft 9in Snyman hadn’t played for them since the World Cup final win in Japan in November 2019.

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The remainder of the Munster squad update read: “On the injury front, Kiran McDonald will go for a scan on an arm injury sustained against Ulster. His availability for the Lions game will be determined later in the week.

“Diarmuid Barron is progressing through his graduated return to play protocols and John Hodnett (thigh) has increased his training load. The availability of Barron and Hodnett for the weekend will be determined later in the week.

“Continuing to rehab: Jeremy Loughman (thigh), Tom Ahern (shoulder), RG Snyman (knee), Fineen Wycherley (shoulder), Paddy Kelly (head), Jack Daly (knee), Andrew Conway (knee), Keynan Knox (knee).”

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