Pieter Steph du Toit not included in Springboks' 42-man RC squad
Injured loose forward Pieter Steph du Toit is the big-name omission from the Springboks Rugby Championship squad as named by head coach Jacques Nienaber this evening.
Du Toit suffered a shoulder injury in the second Test against the British & Irish Lions and didn’t feature in the Springbok third Test victory in Cape Town last night. The former World Player of the Year is arguably South Africa’s outstanding forward and his absence during the Rugby Championship would be keenly felt.
“We are very proud about winning Castle Lager Lions Series and as a team we enjoyed celebrating that massive feat on Saturday night, but we have a big week ahead,” said Nienaber.
“Our first Test against Argentina in the Rugby Championship is on Saturday, so everything we do now has to be geared toward delivering a quality performance to kick off our campaign.
“We have two important games in Nelson Mandela Bay and then we travel to Australasia for the away leg of the tournament.
“With a long season ahead, it is important that we build on the strides made in our last few matches when we take the field in the coming weeks.”
There were no serious injuries from the third Test, but Nienaber admitted they may look at resting a few players this week after the physically taxing Castle Lager Lions Series.
“We selected a big squad with the intention of being as well prepared as possible for the season ahead,” he said.
“There are some players who were part of the initial 46-man squad for our conditioning camp in June, who have not had an opportunity yet, so we will look to give them some of them a run in the next few weeks.
“It is important that we manage the players well to maintain the standards we have set for ourselves, and that includes game time for some players and resting others who have had a heavy load in the last few weeks.”
Utility forward: Rynhardt Elstadt.
Flyhalves: Elton Jantjies, Handré Pollard, Morné Steyn.
Utility backs: Damian Willemse, Frans Steyn.