The worst fears were realised for Zain Davids on Tuesday as he will have to undergo surgery on his shoulder and miss the rest of the Blitzboks’ season.
Davids has become an increasingly influential member of the injury-hit Springbok Sevens outfit, but hurt his shoulder during practice last week Wednesday, which ruled him out of the Hong Kong Sevens.
The 22-year-old Capetonian, who plays as a loose forward in 15-man rugby, will have his operation on Wednesday.
But good news for coach Neil Powell is that captain Philip Snyman, Cecil Afrika, JC Pretorius and Mfundo Ndhlovu will be back for the last two World Series tournaments in London (25-26 May) and Paris (1-2 June).
They won’t be at the Singapore Sevens this weekend, though, where Powell will hope to revitalise a Blitzboks team that were unbeaten in the pool stages in Hong Kong, but then lost to the USA and Argentina.
To that end, strength and conditioning coach Ghafoer Luckan said from Singapore on Tuesday that the South Africans won’t do much on-field work this week, in order to be in reasonable shape for the weekend.
“The second week of any tour is always tough – more so this week, simply because we’ve come from six tournaments in the space of 12 weeks,” said Luckan, who played provincial rugby as a wing for Western Province, SWD Eagles, Leopards and Border.
“So, some tired bodies out there, and guys who have played from Hamilton up until now are quite tired.
“Recovery is quite important, so we’ve got the mindset of ‘less is more’ this week. We had a flush-out session today, and then it will be two field sessions and a gym session this week, to make sure the guys are ready for this weekend.
“We have a pool session after every training session, and the guys need to make sure they stay hydrated.
“We decided to train indoors today, it was more technical. And getting out of the heat was really important for us.”
The Blitzboks will face a tough challenge in Pool A, where they will come up against Hong Kong champions Fiji, Scotland and Canada.@ashfakmohamed