South African talisman set for long lay off after shoulder operation
South Africa head coach Jacques Nienaber has confirmed that Pieter–Steph du Toit will be out “for some time” after undergoing shoulder surgery following an injury picked up in the second Test against the British & Irish Lions.
The 2019 World Rugby player of the year came off clutching his shoulder in the first half of the second Test following a controversial tackle by Lions winger Duhan van der Merwe just after du Toit had passed the ball. He tried to play on but was unable to do so and was eventually replaced by Kwagga Smith.
He missed the final Test in which the Springboks clinched the series, and will miss the opening of the Rugby Championship, where South Africa face Argentina at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Saturday. Despite not being named in South Africa’s 42-man squad for the Championship, Nienaber was unable to give an exact timeframe as to how long the flanker will be out for.
“Pieter-Steph had surgery on Monday, I spoke to him briefly, it went well,” Nienaber said. “So I think he is going to be out for some time.
“On Pieter-Steph, I’m not 100% sure [how long he will be out for]. He texted me last night, on Monday evening, then I spoke to him this morning on how it is going.
“He said after the game that he is going in for the operation and we had a quick chat on Sunday, he said congrats to the boys and we just spoke about his contribution in the two Tests that he was involved, but I’m not 100% sure. I would lie if I put a timeframe on it, so I’m not sure.”
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