Lions to be boosted by Dayimani, Viljoen return

Hacjivah Dayimani and EW Viljoen are among the Lions players who are expected to return to full training soon.

The Lions on Tuesday released an update on the progress of their injured players, after announcing that all 70 players and staff had tested negative for Covid-19.

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In terms of positives, the Lions are expecting both Dayimani and Viljoen to return to full training next week, while wing Jamba Ulengo has already been back in training after injuring his knee in December.

Dayimani has been out since undergoing surgery on his meniscus last November, while Viljoen has quickly recovered from the knee injury he suffered in February.

Loosehead prop Sti Sithole (hamstring injury) and loose forward Travis Gordon (shoulder operation) are also expected back in training towards the end of this month, while Roelof Smit is expected to return in early April.

However, the Lions have also been dealt a blow with the news that young flyhalf James Mollentze is expected to be out for the next nine months after suffering a knee injury during their pre-season.

Mollentze had to be stretchered off after tearing his ACL, MCL and meniscus against the EP Elephants.

Other long-term absentees include Gianni Lombard, who is expected back in October, and Jaco Kriel, expected to return in June after an ankle injury.

Photo: Johan Rynners/Gallo Images