Bismarck du Plessis. Picture: GALLO IMAGES
Bismarck du Plessis. Picture: GALLO IMAGES

Despite an air of anticipation for their return to the Springbok fold‚ it perhaps came as little surprise that hooker Bismarck du Plessis and utility back Frans Steyn have been withdrawn from the Test series against England because of injury.

Both players play for Montpellier and were involved in last weekend’s Top 14 final defeat to Castres. They were thus not available for this weekend’s opening Test against England at Ellis Park. They were supposed to play a part in the remainder of the series, but SA Rugby on Wednesday‚ in a brief statement that did not specify the nature of the injuries‚ said the two players were unavailable.

"Both players sustained the injuries while playing club rugby in France last weekend. Both went for further investigations and specialist opinions and it was decided to rather withdraw them from the Springbok squad for the incoming series against England‚" it read.

Du Plessis was supposed to be a welcome addition to the Bok group in the absence of the injured Malcolm Marx.

The last time Du Plessis played for the Boks was in the 2015 World Cup playoff against Argentina. Steyn last played Test rugby in a 2017 international match against France at Ellis Park.