Springboks captain out for eight weeks
May 25, 2014
Jean de Villiers, in action for the Stormers, will be sidelined for at least two months © Getty Images
South Africa will be without their captain for the June's two-Test series against Wales after Jean de Villiers was ruled out for eight weeks with a knee injury.
De Villiers withdrew from the Stormers' Super Rugby clash with the Cheetahs on Saturday after experiencing discomfort in his left knee. A scan subsequently revealed damage which could keep him out of action until August's Rugby Championship.
He will also miss fixtures against a World XV on June 7 and Scotland on June 28. Wales take on the Springboks on June 14 and 21.
"Losing our captain is a massive setback," said Springbok head coach Heyneke Meyer. "Jean has been superb as our leader on and off the field and he was in excellent form as well. He is a wonderful ambassador for South Africa and is respected across the world as a leader - we will certainly miss him next month.
"His injury is the latest in a string of setbacks we've experienced, and with Jaque Fourie also ruled out it means we'll play with a new captain and a new midfield combination next month.
"Luckily we have good depth in the squad at centre, but replacing your captain is always difficult. We have a number of good leaders in the squad, but I don't want to rush a decision on the captaincy as we still have to finalise the squad for June."
De Villiers had been due to take part in a training camp with the Springboks' preliminary squad on Sunday morning. His place was taken by a lock - the promising Stephen Lewies.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
West Ham have been handed a blow as Andy Carroll will miss the start of the season as he is set to undergo surgery on an ankle problem he picked up in training
Michael van Gerwen's quest to lift a maiden World Matchplay title continues as he reached the semi-finals following a 16-12 victory over Dave Chisnall
Colin Montgomerie has plenty of work to do if he is to become only the second man after Gary Player to win all three Senior majors in a season as he is seven shots off the lead at the Senior Open Championship
Nico Rosberg admits he and Lewis Hamiton are walking a "fine line" in their bid to win the world championship but still both keep Mercedes at the centre of their priorities
Liverpool owner John W Henry insists the decision to sell Luis Suarez was the right one - and that the club will cope without him this season