Springbok hooker, Malcolm Marx, has been ruled out of the remainder of the Rugby World Cup in France with a long-term knee injury.
Marx, who was not included in Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber’s matchday squad to face Romania in Bordeaux on Sunday, went down at training on Wednesday after having his knee caught in contact.
His injury leaves the Bok team short in the hooker position as only he and Sunday’s captain (against Romania) Bongi Mbonambi, are the only two specialists in the position.
Utility forward, Deon Fourie, has provided cover in the position before – while flanker Marco van Staden has also been training in the spot.
“First and foremost, we are extremely disappointed for Malcolm, and we wish him all the best in his recovery,” said Nienaber.
“He’s been working very hard to be in the best form possible for the tournament, and it’s tragic that his campaign has ended this way. As a team we will remain in contact with him, as we do with all injured players such as Lukhanyo (Am), Handre (Pollard) and Lood (de Jager), and support him as much as we can through the recovery process.
“We have enough cover at hooker with Bongi (Mbonambi) and Deon (Fourie) in the squad, while Marco (van Staden) has also been training there and has been named on all our team sheets so far as a hooker option.
Nienaber says they’ll assess their needs for the rest of the tournament and confirm if they will be calling up additional players later this week.
The Springboks will leave for Bordeaux on Thursday afternoon, where they will continue their preparations for Sunday’s round two encounter against Romania at Stade de Bordeaux.
Written by: Ntsako Mukhari