Larynx sidelines Lappies for a month
Pretoria - Lappies Labuschagne will be out of action for at least a month and will undergo surgery on his larynx on Thursday to repair damage to his vocal chords.
According to the supersport.com website, Labuschagne has been struggling since the Bulls defeat against the Chiefs on tour three weeks ago, but chose to continue playing to try and help the Bulls make the Super Rugby playoffs.
After that hope disappeared after their loss to the Melbourne Rebels last weekend, the Bulls flank decided to follow medical advice and go under the knife.
According to team doctor Org Strauss he will be out for at least a month as he recovers but should be ready to play in the Currie Cup series at the end of July.
The Bulls were further hit by bad news with the withdrawal of flank Deon Stegmann with bruised ribs, ruling himself out of contention for the game this weekend against the Cheetahs and joining a number of stalwarts on the sidelines.
The Bulls will name their side on Thursday, but chances are it will be a relatively young and inexperienced team to face the Cheetahs, with coach Frans Ludeke resting several players.
Already midfielder Jan Serfontein has been ruled out with a knee injury for another one to two weeks, and with his chances of playing international rugby in the July window good, it seems like a wise decision, especially considering his replacement, Burger Odendaal, is in fine form at the moment.
Ludeke has also rested the Springbok trio of Victor Matfield, Handre Pollard and Trevor Nyakane, all three according to the agreement with SA Rugby after they missed the original set of a break every five weeks. Matfield was rested against the Brumbies as well just a fortnight ago, but with only one game left, the Bulls have no option but to rest the Bok lock.
Pollard has also been given an extra week since returning early from the tour and it is likely that Jacques-Louis Potgieter will continue in the position with young Tian Schoeman on the bench.
Nyakane’s break couldn’t come sooner, as the prop has been involved in every single game this season, on both sides of the scrum and has not been managed as well as the Bok management would have liked.
Ludeke said they had managed Nyakane in the past fortnight.
“We are obviously honouring that arrangement with SARU - guys like Handre, Victor and Trevor. We’ve managed Trevor for the last two weeks, he didn’t really train and came off the bench because we tried to break through. This week we will honour that and give him that rest. It’s a well-deserved rest for him - he was really a stalwart this whole season.”