Earle called up to Stormers

Lock George Earle has been named as Andries Bekker’s replacement for the Stormers’ tour of Australasia.

Bekker may be ruled out of the remainder of the competition with a broken bone and torn ligament in his toe.

Earle, 22, was a member of the side’s pre-season training group and played in their warm-up match against Boland. The other locks to tour are Adriaan Fondse, AJ Venter and Hilton Lobberts.

The Stormers had looked at the option of bringing in Ross Skeate, but he broke his jaw for Toulon on the weekend.

Stormers media manager Frikkie Erasmus said Earle’s inclusion was the best option at present.

‘It will be difficult to find somebody to replace a guy with Andries’ height and speed,’ Erasmus told the team’s official website.

‘Earl is the next guy in line and will be going on tour. Rassie [Erasmus] thought long and hard about this and George is the only player who could replace Andries at this stage.’