Robbie Fleck has confirmed that Springbok prop Frans Malherbe will miss the Stormers’ Super Rugby tour to Australasia.
Malherbe has been recovering from a neck injury, and will remain unavailable for the Stormers’ three-week tour, which follows their season-opener against the Jaguares on 17 February.
‘Out of our first eight games, six are away from home, so we are touring after one game at home and the likes of Eben [Etzebeth] and Frans [Malherbe] are going to be missing from that tour,’ Fleck commented after the Stormers’ pre-season win over the SWD Eagles this past weekend.
‘Jean-Luc [du Plessis] and Dan du Plessis will still be out as well, but we are going to get them back, which is the pleasing side. The medical staff are working incredibly hard to get them back fit and ready, we need to get them 100% ready before we play them.
‘We are taking it on a week by week basis with Eben,’ he added. ‘It is the type of injury where once it reacts and the muscles and the nerves start working again, it is quite a quick turnaround.’
Fleck said he had generally been pleased with the intensity displayed by the team in a comprehensive 77-0 victory over the Eagles.
‘There were two things from our side that we came from this game with and we wanted to get right. One was our physicality, especially in the carrying and at the breakdown, the other one was our defensive effort.
‘I thought the conditions were difficult, but our breakdown was outstanding on attack. Whenever we come here [to George] it is always a dogfight at the breakdown, but our physicality around there was something that we can be proud of.
‘Our defensive effort was good today, I thought we got off the line nicely and we created a few try-scoring opportunities through our defence.’
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