Lambie could return sooner than expected

2014-04-23 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — Patrick Lambie is fast recovering from the long-term injury he sustained against the Bulls and he may yet run out for the Sharks’ last few Super Rugby matches.

Sharks coach Jake White yesterday announced Lambie may already be fit to play in July and be part of the last two league matches.

He will then also be considered for the quarter-final matches, if the Sharks’ current form carries them to these games.

Lambie tore a muscle in his upper arm against the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld and initial predictions were that he would be out of action for at least six months.

He will, however, still not be part of Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer’s plans in the Tests against Wales in June.

White welcomed the news of Lambie’s return, what with his flyhalf shortage due to Fred Zeilinga also on the injury list and Tim Swiel still finding his feet at this level of the game.

Swiel did not convince against the Cheetahs on Saturday and White will have to decide on a strategy to solve his flyhalf weakness for the match against the Highlanders in Durban on Friday night, and Frans Steyn may be the man to solve his problem.

White said he did not want to make many changes to the team with so little time to practise. “The last thing you want to do is to make six or seven changes and this against a team [the Highlanders] who rested last week…

“You do not want to give them the advantage just because you did not select the right team.”

Meanwhile, the number of Sharks players on the injury list is growing, with wing Tonderai Chavhanga who will also be sidelined for about a month after he suffered an injury against the Cheetahs.

One positive is that Odwa Ndungane may be off the injury list for the match against the Highlanders.

JP Pietersen and Paul Jordaan are both still recovering from their injuries and may only be back in action for the Sharks’ tour to Australasia.

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