Ref Jaftha Injured
Jason Jaftha, one of SANZAR's panel of Super Rugby referees, has suffered what seems to be a serious knee injury.
Jaftha was one of the referees who attended the SANZAR referees' camp in Sydney last month. There he did the fitness test but was later playing touch rugby when he suffered pain in his right knee.
He attended the SA referees' camp in Riebeeck, was not required to do the fitness test because he had done it in Sydney and pronounced himself fit. He was then appointed to referee the Super Rugby warm-up match between the Eastern Province Kings and the Lions at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth. He lasted three minutes before turning on the run and collapsing as his right leg gave way.
His injury has been diagnosed as a tear to his anterior cruciate ligament, the ligament that keeps the knee stable injury especially when turning.
He was forced to withdraw from his first Super Rugby match of the season – the Sharks vs the Bulls in Durban. Jaco Peyper replaced him.
Jaftha, at the worst, is looking at an operation and a lay-off of from six to nine months. But he will be seeing specialist Dr Willem van der Merwe as soon as possible.
Referees will be wishing him well.