South Africa cleared to resume prep ahead of Lions tour

Springboks squad was placed in isolation on Sunday after three positive Covid-19 tests

Herschel Jantjies has been cleared to join training after returning a positive Covid-19 test. Photograph: Steve Haag/Getty

Herschel Jantjies has been cleared to join training after returning a positive Covid-19 test. Photograph: Steve Haag/Getty

 

SA Rugby has confirmed that the Springboks will resume their preparations for the two Tests against Georgia after receiving feedback from the Lions series medical advisory group.

Three players - Herschel Jantjies, Vincent Koch and Sbu Nkosi - tested positive for Covid-19 on Sunday following PCR tests on arrival at the team hotel in Johannesburg.

Jantjies has subsequently been cleared and will be able to return to training with the rest of the team.

“In light of this, as well as the strict precautionary measures taken by the team and the effective isolation protocols since the squad assembled, the Springboks can resume their training programme from Monday afternoon,” said a statement by SA Rugby.

The Springboks will face Georgia in the first of two Test matches at Loftus Versfeld on Friday, with the second Test being hosted at Ellis Park next week Friday, July 9th.

Meanwhile, the British & Irish Lions squad and management landed in Johannesburg on Monday morning, with the SA Government stating that the tour will go ahead despite the country moving to level four lockdown restrictions due to the worsening third wave of the coronavirus.

However, with travel in and out of Gauteng prohibited, it remains to be seen whether the Lions’ five matches scheduled in that province will proceed or be moved to a different province.

As things stand, this Saturday’s match between the B&I Lions and Golden Lions in Johannesburg will go ahead as planned, and the Lions are currently set to play a total of five games in either Johannesburg or Pretoria

But the remaining seven games - including the three Tests against the Springboks - could be relocated to Cape Town in a scenario where it is no longer deemed viable to travel between Gauteng and the Western Cape.

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