In a dramatic turn of events, star scrumhalf Faf de Klerk has rejoined the Springbok squad in Paris ahead of Saturday’s Test against France.
De Klerk was a spectator at Twickenham at the weekend, where the Boks went down 12-11 to England.
The World Rugby Player of the Year nominee was unavailable as the match was played outside the official Test window.
But after not being named in the original squad – which included other European-based players such as Willie le Roux, Cheslin Kolbe, Franco Mostert, Francois Louw and Vincent Koch – De Klerk has now been added and made his way to France.
“BREAKING: @fafdeklerk has joined the Springbok squad in Paris and is available for Saturday’s Test against @FFRugby at the Stade de France. More to follow. #boksontour #LoveRugby” the Springboks posted on their Twitter account on Monday.
BREAKING: @fafdeklerk has joined the Springbok squad in Paris and is available for Saturday's Test against @FFRugby at the Stade de France. More to follow. #boksontour #LoveRugby pic.twitter.com/lWNDLzzT4E
De Klerk’s absence saw Ivan van Zyl get a chance to wear the No 9 jersey against England, while Embrose Papier got a belated last few minutes off the bench.
The end-of-year tour was regarded as a wonderful opportunity for Van Zyl and Papier to get considerable game time under their belt ahead of next year’s World Cup.
De Klerk had played in most of the games this year, and was seldom substituted, with Papier remaining on the bench.
But coach Rassie Erasmus may have called in De Klerk due to the defeat against England, which was the Boks’ sixth defeat in 11 Tests.