Vodacom Super Rugby
Nokwe's RWC dream in tatters
Brenden Nel - SuperSport
Jongi Nokwe (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Springbok winger Jongi Nokwe's chances of slipping through the back door into the World Cup squad look thin after it was announced the winger will have to undergo minor surgery again on his injured knee.
Nokwe is in a race against time to be fit for selection, but will only make his comeback in the second half of the Currie Cup season and barring injury, looks like he may miss out on a late call-up to the Bok squad.
Nokwe, considered one of the fastest players in the country, injured his collateral medial ligament late last year, and will go under the knife again to remove staples that have been hampering his rehab process.
According to Cheetahs doctor Ian Morris, Nokwe is still on course to be ready in August for action, after the World Cup squad has been announced.
The winger was also left out of the 51-man training squad announced by Springbok coach Peter de Villiers a few weeks back, and unless there are injuries, may have to kiss his World Cup dream goodbye.
"It isn't a massive issue," Dr Morris told SuperSport.com regarding the operation.
"The staples were hindering his recovery and we decided to take them out. He is running again and he is well within his normal recovery process at the moment," said Morris.
Springbok flanker Juan Smit "is very much on track at the moment" in his recovery process, according to Morris, and is currently building up strength in the gym.
There was also good news for the Cheetahs in the rest of their Super Rugby campaign and looking ahead to the Currie Cup as Rayno Benjamin and Barry Geel have been declared fit, while the broken arm for Frans Viljoen doesn't look as bad as initially expected.
"We decided not to operate on Frans, we will do an x-ray in four weeks time and see how it goes, but currently we're hoping we don't have to operate."
Midfielder Andries Struass is also recovering well, and is on course to return for the Currie Cup.