Frans Steyn will not be available for selection for the Springboks’ Test against the All Blacks at FNB Stadium on 21 August, it was confirmed by Andy Marinos, SARU’s manager of national teams, at a media conference on Thursday.
Steyn has told Marinos that he has been advised not to train until Wednesday next week after suffering an injury to his quadriceps muscle in a pre-season match last Friday.
Marinos, meanwhile is in discussions with Steyn’s club Racing Metro and the French Rugby Federation to secure Steyn’s availability for the following two Tests against Australia on 28 August and 4 September.
“The injury situation has to be dealt with first, but we are hopeful that Frans will be available to us after the All Blacks match,” Marinos said.
Speaking at the same media conference, Springbok coach Peter de Villiers said delays over Steyn’s availability had led him to reconsider his options for the clash with the All Blacks.
“It has been slightly disruptive but we have players in the group who are ready to play and it would be silly to take risks if any player is not 100 percent fit”.
De Villiers said that there had been serious discussions over the poor performances overseas and that players and management had recommitted themselves to putting things right.
“We did some hard talking,” the coach said. “It was acknowledged by us all that fixing things has to come from within and that everyone has to play their part. We let ourselves down and there is a determination to show that we can bounce back”.
De Villiers said that a set of minor adjustments in key areas were needed as opposed to wholesale changes.
“Last year the bulk of the squad came from the Bulls and the Sharks, who play a similar style of rugby. With more Stormers players coming in this year we have had to adapt a bit.
“We did not have the opportunity, or in fact the time, to get everyone fully on the same page, which we have now been able to do during this week’s training camp”.
De Villiers confirmed that players released to play in the Absa Currie Cup at the weekend would not necessarily be excluded from the group that reassembles on Sunday. He added that the match 22 for the Test would be named on Tuesday 17 August.
The coach also dismissed speculation that Western Province defensive coach Jacques Nienaber would be joining the team management