JOHANNESBURG - Inspirational Lions captain Warren Whiteley has been ruled out of rugby for the next four weeks after picking up a knee injury during Saturday’s Super Rugby match against the Blues.
Whiteley came off the field in the 25th minute with a knee injury and it was confirmed on Monday morning that he has suffered a grade 2 posterior cruciate ligament injury. He will be sidelined for up to four weeks.
Whiteley will thus miss this weekend’s match against the Sunwolves as well as the match against the Jaguares (in Buenos Aires) the following week, and quite possibly also the matches against the Crusaders and Stormers.
The hard-working No 8 had only recently returned to action after spending the latter half of the 2017 season on the sidelines with a groin problem. He was named Springbok captain ahead of the June series against France, but led the side in only the first two Tests before being sidelined for the rest of the year. He only returned to action in December, for his Japanese club, and was in good form for the Lions in the early stages of the Super Rugby competition.
New national coach Rassie Erasmus will be hoping he returns in time – and fit – for this year’s June series, against Eddie Jones’ England.
Lions boss Swys de Bruin will now have to name a new team leader, as the side look to hit back following the unexpected 38-35 defeat suffered against the Blues at the weekend.