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Marco called up as cover for injured Siya

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Thirteen additional players from the Bulls and Sharks including Francois Louw, were called into camp over the weekend.

Springbok captain Siya Kolisi is still under an injury cloud ahead of the upcoming Rugby Championship. Picture: BackpagePix

Springbok captain Siya Kolisi’s participation in the upcoming abbreviated Rugby Championship is hanging in the balance after reinforcements were called in as a precaution.

Bulls loose forward Marco van Staden has been called into the Springbok preparation camp in Pretoria as cover for Kolisi.

Kolisi (pictured) injured his knee in the Stormers’ win over the Highlanders at Newlands and was ruled out for up to six weeks.

The inspirational Bok captain is among 40 players who assembled in Pretoria ahead of the Rugby Championship which kicks off with a clash against Australia at Ellis Park on July 20. The initial news from the Bok camp was that Kolisi continued with his rehabilitation and the hope was to have him ready for the first match against Australia.

“Van Staden has been drafted in as cover for Siya Kolisi and will remain in camp until there is absolute clarity about whether Kolisi will be able to take part in the initial stages of the Castle Lager Rugby Championship,” SA Rugby said in a statement.

Thirteen additional players from the Bulls and Sharks including Francois Louw, were called into camp over the weekend.

Van Staden was not among these players despite stellar performances in the last crucial weeks of the Bulls’ Super Rugby campaign.

The return of Marcell Coetzee, Rynhardt Elstadt and Louw’s call-up scuppered Van Staden’s chances of adding to his two caps from 2018.

Van Staden missed half of the season after recovering from a tendon injury and soon found his form that earned him his Bok colours.

The Boks take on the All Blacks in Wellington a week after the clash against the Wallabies, before concluding their Rugby Championships campaign against Argentina two weeks later on August 10 in Salta. SA and Argentina meet again a week later in Pretoria in a one-off Test before the Boks report for Rugby World Cup training duty.

Springbok group:

Forwards: Schalk Brits (Vodacom Bulls), Marcell Coetzee (Ulster, Ireland), Lood de Jager (Bulls), Thomas du Toit (Cell C Sharks), Pieter-Steph du Toit (DHL Stormers), Rynhardt Elstadt (Toulouse, France), Eben Etzebeth (Stormers), Lizo Gqoboka (Bulls), Steven Kitshoff (Stormers), Vincent Koch (Saracens, England), Siya Kolisi (Stormers), Francois Louw (Bath), Frans Malherbe (Stormers), Malcolm Marx (Emirates Lions), Bongi Mbonambi (Stormers), Tendai Mtawarira (Sharks), Franco Mostert (Gloucester, England), Trevor Nyakane (Bulls), Marvin Orie (Lions), Kwagga Smith (Lions), RG Snyman (Bulls), Marco van Staden (Bulls), Duane Vermeulen (Bulls).

Backs: Lukhanyo Am (Sharks), Damian de Allende (Stormers), André Esterhuizen (Sharks), Faf de Klerk (Sale Sharks, England), Aphiwe Dyantyi (Lions), Warrick Gelant (Bulls), Elton Jantjies (Lions), Herschel Jantjies (Stormers), Cheslin Kolbe (Toulouse), Jesse Kriel (Bulls), Dillyn Lleyds (Stormers), Makazole Mapimpi (Sharks), Sibusiso Nkosi (Sharks), Willie le Roux (Toyota Verblitz, Japan), Handré Pollard (Bulls), Cobus Reinach (Northampton Saints, England), Frans Steyn (Montpellier, France).