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Springbok captain to see specialist following injury

By Matthew Scott
Eben Etzebeth leaves the field injured against Wales

Springboks skipper Eben Etzebeth will see a specialist after suffering neck and shoulder injuries in South Africa’s defeat to Wales on Saturday.

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The lock had to be withdrawn before half-time in his side’s pulsating 24-22 defeat at the Principality Stadium after suffering nerve damage, which caused “severe pain in his left shoulder”, according to SA Rugby’s statement.

 

“The scans we took on Saturday evening after the match came out normal,” Springboks team doctor Konrad von Hagen said.

“Eben will, however, visit a specialist in Cape Town to further investigate the injured shoulder and his troublesome back.”

South Africa fought from 18 points down in Cardiff to stand on the brink of a win that would have boosted head coach Allister Coetzee’s long-term job prospects, only for Leigh Halfpenny to kick a crucial 68th-minute penalty and snatch victory for the hosts.

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William 2 hours ago
All Blacks vs England takeaways: Richie Who? Time for Cortez

Correct analysis of Perofeta’s bungling of the try opportunity Ben. Never ‘fixed’ Steward as he came across in defence and passed too early. Steward didn’t have to break his stride and simply moved on to pressure Telea. Never scanned the easier option of passing to the two supporting players on the inside. Beauden Barrett showed how it is done when he put Telea in for his try. Another point from the game is that the rush defence is hard to maintain as the number of phases increases. From scrums the defensive line only contains backs who all have roughly the same pace. Once forwards are involved, the defence has players with variable speeds often leading to a jagged line. It also tends to lose pace overall giving the attack more time and space. Beauden Barrett’s break to set up Telea’s try came because Baxter went in to tackle McKenzie and Steward went out to cover Telea. Barrett has a massive hole to run through, then commits Steward by passing as late as possible and Telea scores untouched. Another comment I would make is that Ben Earl is a good player and generally an excellent defender but he made three significant misses in the series, two of which led to All Black tries. Got stepped by Perofeta in Dunedin for Savea’s try, missed McKenzie in Auckland leading to what should have been a certain try being set up by Perofeta and was one of the tacklers who couldn’t stop Savea in the leadup to Telea’s first try. Perhaps he should contact Owen Farrell to pick up a few tips from ‘tackle school’.

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