The Cheetahs will be without tighthead prop Kobus Calldo for the remainder of their Australasian tour after he succumbed to injury during the Super 14 clash against the Brumbies on Friday.
This was the news from the Cheetahs’ camp as they prepare for a clash against the Waratahs in Sydney this coming weekend – the last match of their overseas tour.
Phil Coetzer writes for Rugby 365 that Bees Roux will be the man coming into the frame after he was called up as emergency cover in the Cheetahs’ front row. Roux was not part of the original touring squad.
The Griquas prop has already joined the Cheetahs squad in Australia, and will be trying to acclimatise in the next four days after the long flight from South Africa.
The Free State franchise has already suffered various injury problems to their forward pack, with CJ van der Linde, Juan Smith and Kabamba Floors the notable absentees.
Van der Linde has returned to fitness recently, and will most likely take over the starting berth at tighthead prop on Friday.
Assistant coach Dawie Theron spoke to rugby365 on Monday and confirmed that the promising Calldo has had to return home to receive medical treatment.
“Kobus Calldo has gone back to South Africa with a torn calf muscle. Bees Roux will be taking his place, and arrived here [in Australia on Monday],” said the coach.
Theron also revealed further injury niggles to other players in the squad.
“Barend Pieterse is struggling with a light calf injury at this stage, but we think he will be okay [for the clash against the Waratahs].
“He is still receiving treatment, but we are confident he will recover in time.
“Then there is still the injury worry over Kabamba Floors. He’s just struggling to get over his knee injury at the moment, even though he is training at the moment.
“We’ll have to see how it goes. At least we don’t really have any injury problems in the backline,” lamented Theron.
The Cheetahs are sorely missing their key players and the experience they bring, and it has shown in their results, especially in the fact that they have been close to victory on many occasions.
Juan Smith has been a major loss over the past few weeks, and his presence is a vital factor that the Cheetahs will have to do without for a few weeks yet.
The Springbok flank damaged knee ligaments in the Round Three match against the Blues in Bloemfontein, and Theron felt that it could be a few weeks before the World Cup winner returned to action.
“I spoke to the doctor [in charge of Juan Smith's rehabilitation] during the week, and Juan could possibly be ready in two or three weeks,” said Theron.
“He will be put through the fitness tests soon. We will make a decision following the final report from doctor Kruger [on Smith's injury].
“So there is a possibility that Juan could start training in two weeks,” he concluded.
The Cheetahs will be hoping to engineer their first win of the season against the ‘Tahs on Friday before they return to their home base in Bloemfontein.Tweet