Cape Town - Jean-Luc du Preez has been ruled out of the Springboks' end-of-year tour to Europe with an ankle injury.
The news was confirmed by SA Rugby on Monday.
Du Preez lasted just 22 minutes of Saturday's Currie Cup final defeat against Western Province in Durban before he was forced to leave the field with what looked a nasty ankle that he had picked up in a tackle.
While that would prove to be a massive blow to the Sharks as they failed to get the job done in front of their home fans, it is also a blow for the Boks.
Du Preez was named in the Bok touring party on Sunday, but x-rays have since revealed that his ankle is fractured and he will play no part in the tour where fixtures against Ireland, France, Italy and Wales await.
Dr Konrad von Hagen, the Springbok team doctor confirmed the injury.
“Today is an important day for us as we evaluate all the players regarding their current injury status,” explained Von Hagen.
“The injury of Jean-Luc was investigated further in Durban and it revealed a fractured ankle. He will see a specialist regarding the management of the injury, which has unfortunately ruled him out of the tour.
“Eben Etzebeth will continue with treatment for his ankle sprain. Our medical team will continuously evaluate him, but at this stage his recovery is satisfactory.
“Last week our goals were achieved regarding the medical assessments, fitness and skills training and this week and we are looking forward to continue with our tour preparations.”
The Springboks will fly out to Dublin at the end of the week in two groups, for their Tests against Ireland, France, Italy and Wales.
No decision has been taken on whether or not Du Preez will be replaced for the tour.