VIDEO: Stormers Bok in race against time for World Cup
Stormers and Springbok lock Salmaan Moerat is set to undergo surgery to repair his damaged knee.
The 24-year-old suffered the injury in the Stormers’ moral-boosting 34-14 win over London Irish in a Champions Cup outing in Cape Town last Saturday.
“Salmaan’s ACL [Anterior Cruciate knee Ligament] will take nine months,” Stormers coach John Dobson said about a setback the young second row forward suffered when he landed awkwardly from a line-out.
Dobson delivered the bleak news update on the three-times capped Bok, as he addressed a media briefing after naming his team to face the Bulls in a bog United Rugby Championship Round 10 encounter on Friday.
The recovery means the lock, who earned all his Test caps this year, will need a miracle to be ready for Bok selection for the World Cup in France next year.
The coach also gave an update on other Stormers injuries – which include Evan Roos (rib), Ernst van Rhyn (ankle), Herschel Jantjies (rib), Ruhan Nel (calf) and Leolin Zas (calf).
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Back-up lock Gary Porter is still struggling with a rib injury he suffered in a European Cup Round One loss to Clermont earlier this month.
He could be back on the field in three to four weeks.
Roos will return to training next week and could feature in the URC clash with the Lions next week.
Nel will be sidelined for another couple of weeks, perhaps a bit longer.
Van Rhyn is another two or three months.
Scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies could have played, but the Stormers did not want to risk the Bok No.9 aggravating the cartilage damage.
“I have no doubt he will play next week,” Dobson added.