Springbok prop Beast Mtawarira has been sent home because of his heart condition.
Mtawarira suffered heart palpitations several hours before the Boks’ Test against Ireland last Saturday. He was forced to withdraw from the match.
The Sharks front-rower was expected to return to action against Scotland this weekend as he travelled with the team to Edinburgh, but it was confirmed on Monday that the player will return home.
‘We’ve consulted with Beast and his cardiologist in Durban and although it’s safe for him to play, we decided it would be best for him to return home and rest,’ said Bok coach Heyneke Meyer. ‘The player’s welfare is the most important consideration at this stage.’
Team doctor Craig Roberts added that Mtawarira had an irregular heart rhythm, which is hereditary.
‘He has had this several times before and it’s always been managed accordingly,’ said Roberts. ‘This condition is not life threatening, but needs to be managed properly which is why we thought it would be in Beast’s best interest to return to South Africa.
‘He needs to have a repeat of the minor procedure he had in Cape Town earlier this year and it’s important to notice that he is not at risk by playing with it, and his career is not in jeopardy.’
Stormers and WP tighthead prop Frans Malherbe has been called up from Cape Town to provide cover, with Jannie du Plessis struggling with an ankle injury after the Ireland Test.