‘Etzebeth is ready to play’ — Coetzee

2014-07-31 00:00

CAPE TOWN — After an extended period on the sidelines, Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth is ready to return to the playing field.

The 22-year-old has been sidelined since late last year with ankle and toe injuries, but has finally recovered and is raring to go.

Western Province coach Allister Coetzee said he’d like to see Etzebeth play for WP in their Currie Cup opener against the EP Kings next Friday.

“Etzebeth has worked hard to regain fitness and he’s ready to play. I would like to see him work on his match fitness by playing for us before the Boks call him up,” Coetzee told Sapa on Tuesday.

However, it’s unlikely that Coetzee will get his wish granted. The Springboks are holding a training camp next week, and Etzebeth is expected to be drafted straight into the Bok squad which will be announced on Saturday night.

Other injured WP players making their way back from injuries who could also come into the Bok squad are centres Jean de Villiers and Damian de Allende (both knee injuries) and prop Frans Malherbe (concussion).

Duane Vermeulen, Schalk Burger, Juan de Jongh, Siya Kolisi and Pat Cilliers are all also possible contenders for Springbok duty.

The Boks start their Rugby Championship campaign against Argentina at Loftus Versfeld on August 16.

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