Tri-Nations latest (Thurs) brings you the news from the Tri-Nations.

Frans ruled out

Frans Steyn won’t play against the All Blacks due to injury and eligibility problems.

Andy Marinos confirmed on Thursday that Steyn’s quad injury will rule him out of training until next Wednesday, only three days before the Test. However, there were also problems with the player being released by the FFR (Fédération Française de Rugby), as Saru failed to ask for the clearance request 14 days before the Test, as the French union wants.

‘The injury situation has to be dealt with first, but we are hopeful that Frans will be available to us after the All Blacks match,’ said Marinos.

WP refuse Nienaber release

Western Province will not release Jacques Nienaber to help the Springbok defence during the Tri-Nations.

WP managing director Rob Wagner said Nienaber is contracted to the Cape province and is needed at this crucial stage of the Currie Cup. WP are at the top of the log, but given that they haven’t won a trophy since 2001, they’re not taking anything for granted.

Nienaber met with Bok management on Wednesday and reported back to WP. It was felt that it would be too much of disruption to let him consult with the Boks.

Cowan cleared for Boks

Jimmy Cowan passed his medical test on Thursday and has been included in the All Blacks’ squad to travel to South Africa this weekend.

The scrumhalf was a concern as he was struggling from a rib injury suffered in the All Blacks’ 49-28 win against the Wallabies in Melbourne a fortnight ago. Last weekend in Chirstchurch, Piri Weepu started in his place and Alby Mathewson found a place amongst the reserves

Mathewson was bracketed with Cowan when the All Blacks announced their 26-man squad on Tuesday, but the Blues No 9 will now fall out

‘Jimmy had a medical assessment in Christchurch today and passed that so he’s fit to travel to South Africa with the team,” All Blacks Doctor Deb Robinson said.

‘He basically needed rest and recuperation to get over the injury, which he has had, and is now keen to get back to training.’

Brussow set for early comeback

Heinrich Brussow could make an early recovery to feature for the Springboks in their end-of-year tour.

The news comes as a surprise as Brussow was told by doctors that he was only likely to play again at the start of 2011. However, Cheetahs president Harold Verster confirmed that could feature as soon as November.

‘Heinrich’s dedication during his rehabilition has seen make impressive progress in his recovery,’ Verster told ‘If all goes well, it looks like he could return to the field at the end of October, in time for the Boks’ November tour to Europe.

‘I think that’s why he’s been included in the Tri-Nations training squad, just to check up on his progress and to ease him back into the system again. They will see that he is making a great recovery.’