Bakkies battles injury

Bakkies Botha is doubtful to make the Springboks trip to Australia and New Zealand.

Botha is the most serious of a host of Boks who could not train when the squad assembled in Johannesburg. Others included Danie Coetzee, Joe van Niekerk and Breyton Paulse, while Jean de Villiers and Bryan Habana took no part in the contact session.

The Boks again were secondary to requirements with Bok coach Jake White in meetings with the President’s Council trying to negotiate a contract extension. He failed and now his attention shifts to the Vodacom Tri Nations challenge.

But it is one he may have to start without Botha and veteran hooker Coetzee, who is also troubled by an ankle injury. Paulse is recovering from a hamstring strain, which ruled him out of the French test in Cape Town.

The Bok management were giving the players until Wednesday afternoon before making another assessment. The squad leaves for Australia at the weekend.