South Africa’s World Cup campaign was ultimately disappointing last Autumn. Although they found their way to the semi-final after a shock opening day loss to Japan, the Springboks let a half-time lead slide against eventual champions New Zealand, and were left with a sense of what might have been.
However, the future is bright, and with players such as Eben Etzebeth, Lood de Jager and Handré Pollard breaking through, many are considering them to be favourites for the 2019 World Cup in Japan.
However, the ‘Boks have been dealt a major blow this afternoon with the news that Pollard will miss out on the entire Super Rugby season, and will probably not recover in time for the Rugby Championship, as reported by SA Rugby Mag.
Bulls head coach Nollis Marais spoke of his disappointment at the news.
“Handré was easing back into training, his first phase of final rehab before being cleared to play, and was busy with a passing drill when he injured himself. This is pretty devastating for all of us as Handré was a key player for us.”
Pollard is one of the most exciting young players in the game at present, and this comes as a huge blow to the World Cup’s third placed side.
The Springboks have yet to find a replacement for head coach Heyneke Meyer, who left the position after the World Cup.
They kick off their new World Cup cycle with a series against Ireland in June, and it is likely that the new coach will be in place by then.