South Africa’s Jean de Villiers ruled out of the World Cup

Springboks captain sustained fractured jaw during 46-6 win over Samoa at Villa Park

South Africa captain  Jean De Villiers has been ruled out of the Rugby World Cup with a fractured jaw. Photograph: Getty

South Africa captain Jean De Villiers has been ruled out of the Rugby World Cup with a fractured jaw. Photograph: Getty

 

South Africa captain Jean de Villiers is out of the World Cup after sustaining a fractured jaw in Saturday’s 46-6 win over Samoa.

The Springboks responded from their shock opening loss to Japan with victory in the Pool B contest at Villa Park, but it has come at a cost.

De Villiers departed immediately to hospital for X-rays on the opposite side of his jaw to the first injury sustained in August, but head coach Heyneke Meyer announced his skipper was out on Sunday.

“Jean is not only our captain and one of the most experienced players in the squad, but he is also the glue of this team and to lose him is very sad,” Meyer said.

“We are all very heartbroken for him and we will miss his influence a lot.

“Jean has fought back from all his injuries and this is the kind of character and fighting spirit we will need to show going forward in this competition.

“While this is a huge and emotional setback for the team, we will now have to regroup and refocus before we start our preparations for Saturday’s match against Scotland.”

The Springbok’s team doctor Craig Roberts said the fracture was on the opposite side of De Villiers’ jaw to the one he injured in the 37-25 defeat to Argentina in Durban in August.

“Jean took a heavy blow to the right side of his jaw in the 72nd minute of the match,” said Roberts. “X-rays and scans after the game confirmed our fears that it was fractured. The left side of his jaw was fractured on the previous occasion. He will return to South Africa for further specialist treatment.”

De Villiers sustained the injury when he was tackled by Tim Nanai-Williams in the closing stages of the Boks’ win at Villa Park, but while he left the pitch to receive treatment he later returned to the fold.

South Africa will make an announcement on Wednnesday regarding the captaincy for their clash with Scotland.

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