JOHANNESBURG – Springbok scrumhalf Faf de Klerk will not be available for South Africa's four end of year Test matches in November.
South Africa are scheduled to play England in London on November 4, France just outside Paris on November 10, Scotland in Edinburgh on November 17 and Wales in Cardiff on November 24.
On Monday it emerged that the 26-year-old was released by Sale Sharks to play in the Rugby Championship on condition he would return in November to the English club. The first match of the tour for the Boks technically falls outside the international window, which means clubs cannot be forced to release players.
The Boks will also be without other UK-based players Willie le Roux and Francois Louw for the match against England. Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus will therefore have to consider Embrose Papier, Ivan van Zyl and Ross Cronje for the vital scrumhalf position.
De Klerk has quickly grown into an important player for Springboks under coach Rassie Erasmus, after falling out of favour with during the final months Alister Coetzee's tenure as head coach before his move to Sale.
De Klerk has played in all five of South Africa's Rugby Championship Test, helping the Springboks to a win over and a loss to Argentina, a win and a loss against Australia and a win against New Zealand.
The scrumhalf looks set to start against in the Boks' last match of the tournament against New Zealand on Saturday in Pretoria. The Boks will also have Bath flank Fracnois Louw available for game after it was announced that he had been recalled.
Former Springbok lock Victor Matfield, Rassie Erasmus and Eben Etzebeth at the team training session at Loftus, Pretoria. pic.twitter.com/w9LgFjOyMx
African News Agency (ANA)