Springboks

Hendricks: Don't treat me any differently

Cornal Hendricks
Cornal Hendricks

Cape Town - If everything goes well with his medical at Toulon in the coming days, Cornal Hendricks will be back on a rugby field soon. 

It is a quite remarkable story, given that he was told at the beginning of the year that he would never play again when he was diagnosed with a heart condition. 

Hendricks this week opened up to Sport24 on what has been a testing year for him, both emotionally and physically, but he is keen to put it all behind him as he looks to get back to what he knows best ... playing rugby and scoring tries. 

He has kept fit throughout the year by playing touch rugby every day, running and working out in the gym, and while he is thankful for the support he has received from the rugby-loving community throughout this difficult period, he has a strong message for fans. 

"If people see me in the streets, I just want them to ask me how I am as a person and not ask me anything about my health," Hendricks pleaded. 

"I feel like an old man when they do that. Please, they must just ask me how I'm doing.

"As they can see, I'm back in the game. Sometimes I feel it's a bit disrespectful.

"I know that everybody is concerned ... but I've moved on and I want everyone to move on. Maybe they can say 'welcome back', or something like that."

Hendricks had joined the Stormers from the Cheetahs ahead of the 2016 Super Rugby campaign, but his condition meant that he was never capped by the Newlands-based franchise. 

He leaves for Toulon on Sunday.

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