Concerning news on star raises questions about Boks' lock stocks
SPOTLIGHT: The Springboks’ lock stocks could be an issue heading into the World Cup in France later this year.
After Salmaan Moerat suffered a serious knee injury while on duty for the Stormers in December, the Springbok management received some more concerning news on Rudolph Snyman.
Irish province Munster revealed this week that Snyman won’t make a scheduled return to the rugby field in January and he is likely to only run out for Munster in March in the latest setback to his career.
And it is precisely this setback that will raise questions about whether or not he will be able to go to the Rugby World Cup this year, having played very little rugby since the Springboks won in Japan in 2019.
Munster announced that Snyman would not return from his knee injury in January and given that the team only has one United Rugby Championship match in February, a March return is more on the cards for Snyman.
The giant World Cup winner has played just four games and 54 minutes since joining Munster in 2020 and has had setback after setback as he has spent more time in rehabilitation than on the training field in Limerick.
While he tore his anterior cruciate knee ligament in his debut game for Munster against Leinster in 2020, his return to the field was then delayed because of a freak firepit accident where he needed to undergo a skin graft to repair burn damage and caused him to miss the British and Irish Lions tour for the Springboks.
His return to Munster saw him play just a handful of games before injuring himself again against the Scarlets and while he was supposed to return earlier this season, he had another setback to his recovery and his return was delayed once more.
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🗣I want to give a massive thanks to @SharksRugby for making me feel at home in #durban
🗣I will continue to give my all for the team for the next few months
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Now, while it was expected he was to return by the end of December, Munster’s injury update will mean he is likely to only return after the Six Nations window.
And while it will be the club’s big interest to see him have a prolonged run of games as the season heads into its business end, there is no doubt that the Springboks will be watching keenly as well to see whether he is still an option or not.
Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber said before the November tour that they needed to look at other options for the World Cup, because, as he put it, they couldn’t keep waiting for Snyman to return.
While the lock is a “freak athlete” – the words the Springboks often use to describe him – the Boks will need to formulate their plans for their title defence in France and if he isn’t going to be available, they have other options they will look at.
Snyman, who according to the club has returned to “field rehabilitation” will turn 28 this month and knows that there is an uphill battle to get himself back into the Springbok squad.
But for now, both he and Munster will just want to get him back onto the field for a run of games so that he can showcase his talents once again.
And put the past few years of setbacks behind him.
See Munster’s latest squad update below: