Springboks

Rassie Erasmus reveals family battle with Covid-19: 'We were pretty bad'

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Rassie Erasmus (Gallo)
Rassie Erasmus (Gallo)
  • SA Rugby director of rugby Rassie Erasmus has revealed that he contracted Covid-19 recently.
  • The deadly disease affected his whole family.
  • Erasmus, who had a serious illness last year, has recovered well.

SA Rugby director of rugby and 2019 Rugby World Cup winning coach Rassie Erasmus has confirmed that he contracted Covid-19 recently, but his recovery is well on track.

Erasmus, who was diagnosed with microscopic polyangiitis with granulomatosis‚ a rare autoimmune disease in early 2019, falls into the vulnerable category group when it comes to Covid-19.

His illness, which was treated with chemotherapy, is not cancerous but can negatively impact vital organs including the kidneys and lungs‚ as well as sinuses and trachea.

Erasmus suffered a rare strain of the disease that his doctor said was potentially fatal.

As a precautionary measure, Erasmus did not physically attend last year’s Green and Gold fixture at Newlands because of the illness.

“I did have Covid-19 and I’m on day 23 now. My wife and I contracted it, along with the kids. Their symptoms were just about losing taste and they didn’t feel sick,” Erasmus said.

“For five to six days, we were pretty bad. That was from about days nine to 14. I think at the time we were pretty bad and down and out. I was really worried because some of us have underlying illnesses. The only thing that’s left now ... is the low heart rate.”

Erasmus, who also mentioned that Bulls director of rugby Jake White was also infected by the virus while Sharks coach Sean Everitt did not travel with his team to face the Cheetahs recently because of Covid-19 issues, said he had slight side effects from the virus.

Erasmus isn’t the first high profile South African sporting personality who contracted Covid-19.

Proteas coach Mark Boucher revealed late last year that he too contracted the virus.

As per the time of publication, South Africa had recorded more than 1.3 million Covid-19 cases with more than 37 000 deaths. As of January 17, 254 more deaths were recorded.

“It’s one of the side-effects, one that I definitely shouldn’t be having, being as fat as I am apparently. I just have headaches, but there are people who have had worse. At this stage though we are going reasonably well,” Erasmus said.

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