The Springboks received a timely boost on Monday with the news that vice-captain Adriaan Strauss is fit to tour with the squad to Europe.
Quintin van Jaarsveld, Rugby365
Strauss’ availability for the year-end tour was put into question after he was a late withdrawal from the Free State Cheetahs side for last Friday’s promotion/relegation match against the Eastern Province Kings in Port Elizabeth due to a recurring knee injury.
However, Cheetahs team doctor Ian Morris confirmed to this website that Strauss’ withdrawal – with the Cheetahs all but assured of their place in next year’s Currie Cup with a commanding 39-point advantage heading into the return fixture – was purely precautionary to ensure he would be ready for the Tests against Ireland (November 10), Scotland (November 17) and England (November 24).
“Adriaan is 100 percent better today [Monday],” Morris told this website. “He didn’t go for any tests and has been cleared to tour with the Springboks.
“The reason why we withdrew him from Friday night’s game was that his knee became painful and even though it wasn’t serious, we didn’t want to risk him.”
Strauss’ availability will come as a major relief to Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer who will have to make do without the services of injured stars Coenie Oosthuizen, Bismarck du Plessis, Tiaan Liebenberg, Andries Bekker, Siya Kolisi, Jacques Potgieter, Pierre Spies, Johan Goosen, Frans Steyn and Bryan Habana,.
Francois Louw is the latest injury concern for the Springbok coach after the former Western Province flank suffered a neck injury shortly after scoring Bath’s third try in their 23-15 victory over the Exeter Chiefs on Saturday.
The results of Louw’s scans on Monday are yet to be revealed.