Gans available for Blitzboks’ Olympic Games campaign

Bulls director of rugby Jake White has confirmed that injured centre Stedman Gans has returned to the Blitzboks and will be available to play at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Gans has been out for the past couple of months after he sustained a serious ankle injury during the Bulls’ pre-season Preparation Series match against the Stormers.

The injury is expected to keep Gans out for up to 10 weeks, which invariably would have ruled him out of the entirety of the Bulls’ Rainbow Cup SA campaign.

However, he has since returned to the Blitzboks’ base in Stellenbosch, where he will undergo the rest of his rehab and should he recover in time, will be up to play sevens at the Olympic Games.

‘I don’t know if he’s quite over his injury,’ White said.

‘He has actually gone down to SAS [Stellenbosch Academy of Sport] to do his rehab. Let’s not forget that the Bulls actually are owners of SAS [through Johann Rupert] – so it’s nice that he can be close to his family and get professional help from SAS, and that’s the head office of the sevens campaign as well. He is in capable hands.

‘They [Springbok Sevens] are trying their best to get him on to the field as soon as possible, and he will start integrating into the sevens programme, and hopefully do whatever he can to make sure that he gets success at the Olympics.’

Gans captained the Blitzboks in the early stages of 2020, but returned to the Bulls after the Covid-19 pandemic brought the sevens calendar to a halt.

Under Jake White, the 24-year-old sealed a place as the team’s outside centre, helping them win both Super Rugby Unlocked and the Currie Cup.

Photo: Lee Warren/Gallo Images

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Dylan Jack