Eben Etzebeth looks set to start against Argentina on Saturday, following a lengthy injury layoff.

Coach Rassie Erasmus sent strong hints from the Boks’ training camp in Durban that the imposing number four would be starting start upon his return.

The match will be Eztebeth’s first bit of rugby since the 2nd of December, which marked the Boks’ loss to Wales and ultimately Allistair Coetzee’s last match in charge. Etzebeth subsequently missed the entire 2018 Super Rugby season, battling a shoulder injury.

On Monday morning, medical specialists declared Eztebeth fit to play.

“We just received the clearance from the specialist.”  said Erasmus.

“He’s been training full on with us ever since the end of the Stormers’ Super Rugby campaign, but we’ve been waiting on this clearance.”

The coach then explained why he would be starting ahead of the successful combination of RG Snyman and Franco Mostert, tested during the England series.

“His match fitness is a concern.”

“It’s for that reason that we won’t see him playing much more than 60 minutes this week.”

“I’d prefer to start a player who is in this situation than play him from the bench. If we start someone else and then there is an injury in the first minute, we might be in trouble.”

 

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