Losing Pollard big blows for Bulls, Boks

Cape Town - Losing flyhalf Handre Pollard is a massive blow for the Bulls and the national team, coach Nollis Marais says.

It was confirmed on Thursday that Pollard had injured his ankle in training and would be sidelined for between 8 to 10 weeks.

This means he would in all likelihood be unavailable for the Springboks’ three-Test series against France in June.

On the basis of his recent performances, Bulls coach Nollis Marais feels Pollard would have deserved the Springbok No 10 jersey.

“Handre may be able to play our last three matches in July, but will have to regain his form. It’s really not good news for us (the Bulls). Handre has started to play better and better and he was in fact our team’s man-of-the-match last Saturday (against the Jaguares),” Marais told Netwerk24.

“His touch kicks are excellent, he didn’t miss one goal-kick and our whole attack revolves around him.”

The 23-year-old Pollard has had a tough time with injuries of late, having missed the entire 2016 season after rupturing knee ligaments.

He played 20 Tests for the Springboks between 2014 and 2015, with his last international appearance coming against Argentina in the third-place playoff at the Rugby World Cup in England.

With Pollard out of the reckoning for the France series, the Lions' Elton Jantjies is seemingly the front-runner for the Springbok No 10 jersey.

Pat Lambie (Sharks) is injured and only expected to return to action in May, while young guns Curwin Bosch (Sharks) and Robert du Preez (Stormers) would be next in line.