Big Springbok lock Andries Bekker will undergo ankle surgery on Tuesday and has consequently been ruled out of contention for the World Cup in New Zealand later this year.
The 27-year-old, 2.08m tight forward was one of a number of players who missed selection for the Springboks first Tri-Nations squad of the season because of injury.
Following further evaluation it has been decided that Bekker requires surgery.
"We have sought a number of expert opinions over the past two weeks and the decision was taken that Andries required surgery now to safeguard his long-term rugby career," said Springbok team doctor, Dr Craig Roberts.
"He ruptured an ankle tendon during the Super Rugby season," he added
Bekker will undergo surgery in Cape Town on Tuesday.
Meanwhile another lock forward, Johann Muller, returns to South Africa on Sunday, having been ruled out of the tour because of a hamstring strain.
Muller was named in the Springbok team to meet Australia in Sydney on Saturday, but, following further evaluation on Thursday, it was decided that the injury had not healed sufficiently. A replacement will be named in due course.
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