Bok Watch: Pollard fires as Kolbe suffers injury scare

A closer look at how the Springbok players are performing in leagues around the world in the lead-up to the much-anticipated three-Test series against the British & Irish Lions.


The Sale Sharks, reinforced by the Springbok quintet of the Du Preez twins, hooker Akker van der Merwe, prop Coenie Oosthuizen and scrumhalf Faf de Klerk, secured their place in the playoffs thanks to an impressive win over the Bristol Bears.

Jean-Luc du Preez, who started at lock, was the standout player, with 59 metres from 12 carries, 10 tackles and nine defenders beaten. His brother, Dan, scored a try and made 14 tackles, while also winning nine lineouts.

Meanwhile, several uncapped players also shone in this past weekend’s action in what could be their final play at a place in the Springbok squad, which will be announced on 5 June.

Jasper Wiese played 60 minutes for the Leicester Tigers in a tough win over the Worcester Warriors. The loose forward made eight carries and beat three defenders before he was substituted in the second half.

Tyrone Green starred at fullback as Harlequins secured the final place in the Premiership playoffs with a bonus-point win over Bath. The 23-year-old made 63m with ball in hand, one clean break and beat five defenders. Bok tighthead Wilco Louw also played for Harlequins, completing just over 60 minutes and winning a turnover during his time on the park.

Another loose forward, Jacques Vermeulen, had an outstanding game for Exeter Chiefs as the defending champions thrashed the Newcastle Falcons. Vermeulen scored two of Exeter’s 12 tries and made seven carries in 57 minutes.

French Top 14:

Handre Pollard completed an impressive 60 minutes in his first start for Montpellier, guiding them to a 23-19 win over Bayonne. Starting in a halfback combination with Cobus Reinach, the Springbok flyhalf kicked two conversions and two penalties. Pollard’s teammate Jan Serfontein scored one of Montpellier’s two tries and made 14 tackles in the match.

Springbok Cheslin Kolbe had an injury scare during Toulouse’s win over Clermont on Saturday. Kolbe played just seven minutes of the match before he was forced off after twisting awkwardly in a tackle. It appeared to be a groin injury, but thankfully Kolbe was able to make his way back onto the field as a replacement for Romain Ntamack in the second half and he made a try-saving tackle.

Meanwhile, Eben Etzebeth played 66 minutes as Toulon beat Bordeaux, while Dillyn Leyds and Raymond Rhule both had good games in La Rochelle’s bonus-point win over Pau. Elton Jantjies was named on the bench for Pau, but played most of the second half after coming on in the 47th minute.

Rainbow Cup:

Damian de Allende started at outside centre as Munster held on to claim a narrow four-point win over the Cardiff Blues. The Springbok made three turnovers in what was CJ Stander’s final home appearance for the club.

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Photo: Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

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Dylan Jack