Kolbe gives Boks injury scare
SPOTLIGHT: The Springboks camp were delivered a scare in Toulouse’s Top 14 clash against Clermont when star wing Cheslin Kolbe limped from the field after just seven minutes of play.
After becoming entangled in a tackle near the sideline, Kolbe twisted awkwardly under the weight of the tackler. After receiving some medical attention from the team doctor, he was forced from the field.
Springbok fans on Twitter were quick to put two and two together, with Kolbe a must-start for the upcoming British and Irish Lions tour any injury could heavily influence the outcome of the series without his game-changing talents.
Cheslin Kolbe left the field after just seven minutes against Clermont. Looked in pain. Hopefully, it’s nothing too serious. Looked like a groin injury.
— Jared Wright (@jaredwright17) May 29, 2021
— Leon Swart (@LeonSwart9) May 29, 2021
— Ross Barnett (@rbarnett08) May 29, 2021
Toulouse were struck with injury again midway through the second half, with flyhalf Romain Ntamack coming from the field in the 61st minute. Surprisingly, that saw Kolbe return to action in Ntamack’s place, dispelling fears that he had suffered a major injury.
The Springbok star went on to influence proceedings, making an impressive try-saving tackle after running down Clermont wing Peter Betham after an intercept. Kolbe then got to his feet and snaffled the ball to complete the turnover tackle.
Just catching up on the 1st half of Toulouse-Clermont now…
— EK Rugby Analysis (@ek_rugby) May 29, 2021
I don’t know who’s watching this but Kolbe’s 60m chase back, tackle, and steal was out of this world.
— The Loose Head (@TheLooseH) May 29, 2021
Kolbe had another moment of brilliance, cutting through the Clermont defence with his trademark step before keeping the ball alive with a basketball-pass. With one more offload off the ground, Toulouse scored a stunning try that was unfortunately called back for a forward pass.
A late try to Tim Nanai-Williams gave Clermont a chance at victory but a penalty goal from Thomas Ramos secured a 36-27 win for Toulouse as they chase a double after winning the Champions Cup against La Rochelle two weeks ago.
The league win retained first place on the Top 14 ladder with La Rochelle, with both clubs equal on 77 competition points.
Meanwhile, La Rochelle bounced back from their Champions Cup Final defeat to Toulouse to thrash Pau 51-27 earlier on Saturday.
In Friday’s action, Joris Segonds booted 26 points to help Stade Francais to a 46-27 victory over Lyon to keep their playoff hopes alive.
Stade’s fifth consecutive Top 14 win left the club from the capital in seventh place, equal on 66 points with Toulon in the battle for the last play-off place that is awarded to the team in sixth.
Bordeaux-Begles are fourth and have secured a place in the playoffs despite a 25-19 defeat at Toulon.
French Top 14 results on Saturday:
Toulouse 36-27 Clermont
Toulon 25-19 Bordeaux-Begles
Agen 14-54 Racing92
Brive 28-33 Castres
La Rochelle 51-27 Pau
Montpellier 23-19 Bayonne
Stade Francais 46-27 Lyon
Source: @RugbyPass (Sam Smith) & AFP