Marland Yarde’s hopes of breaking into the England squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup have suffered a major setback with confirmation that the Sale wing suffered a catastrophic knee injury against Newcastle and will not be back until next season.
Yarde has been in impressive form for Sale who have now been robbed of one of their most potent attacking weapons which makes the imminent return of England wing Chris Ashton after his ban even more important for club and country.
Sale have confirmed that Yard ruptured his MCL and ACL ligaments and dislocated his left knee while making a tackle in the 76th minute of the club’s 20-7 win at the AJ Bel Stadium on Saturday. Initial expectation is that he will be out for a minimum of six months which means his target will be to return for pre-season training. That will give very little time to press his claims for a World Cup place.
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Meanwhile, Sale are in discussions with the South African Rugby Union over the availability of scrum half Faf de Klerk who was released by the club for the entire Rugby Championship which saw him make the No9 jersey is own with a series of live-wire performances. His departure late in game has been pin pointed as one of the reasons the Springboks failed to hold onto their lead and lost 32-30 to the All Blacks.
Having allowed de Klerk to return to Springbok colours, Sale now need the scrum half to help them in the European Challenge Cup and the Gallagher Premiership which returns during the November international period. South Africa will want de Klerk in their armoury but Sale do not have to release him for the November 3rd test with England as this is outside the international window. The Springboks also play France, Scotland and Wales.
Reports in South Africa claim that Sale have told the Union that de Klerk will miss the November tests but this has yet to be established, given it is an international release period.
Steve Diamond, the Sale director of rugby, is keen to get de Klerk back and said: “If Faf is not a one-man team he is a one-man dynamo, on the pitch and on the training ground. He does make a massive difference to us and we look forward to having him back.”
He made 24 appearances for Narbonne last season in the French Pro D2 and said: “It’s a bit different at Carrington from the South of France, but great to be back in the U.K. The opportunity to come and play for a Gallagher Premiership club is not one to turn down.
“I’m looking forward to getting to know all the lads here, and becoming a member of the Sharks front row.”
Watch: Springbok legend Schalk Burger talks about injury layoff
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