Springboks coach Jacques Nienaber defends his scorched stars

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Hopefully, Springboks giant RG Snyman can still face Alun Wyn Jones in tests against the Lions.

Springboks coach Jacques Nienaber has defended his burnt stars Damian de Allende and RG Snyman and is optimistic they will recover in time to face the British and Irish Lions.

The couple suffered burns to their feet, hands and face when gasoline exploded while fueling a household in Ireland last weekend. They were rushed to hospital along with their fellow Munster club mates CJ Stander and Mike Haley.

Nienaber, who spent time in Ireland with Munster himself as an assistant coach, said the practice of using gasoline on fires was common and he understood how the accident had come about. product. He was just thankful that the consequences weren’t worse.

“It’s not ideal,” Nienaber admitted during a virtual Springboks press briefing in Bloemfontein. “But it’s not something we can control and that’s why people call it an accident. For me being in Ireland, I understand what happened.

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“To put it in context, it rains a bit more in Ireland than in South Africa and even in Ireland when I was there if you wanted to use a log fire on a pitch (barbecue) or sit in front of it. a wood fire like we do in South Africa if you miss the house a bit I did the same. I took some gasoline and threw it on the wood to light it otherwise the wood is wet and cannot be burnt.

“I did it the same way everyone does there and accidents happen. They explained it to me, and it makes perfect sense. The fire spread through the cartridge and the cartridge fell and gasoline fell on their legs, but it’s superficial burns, and thank goodness for that.

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Springboks coach Jacques Nienaber said his Irish experience gave him an understanding of how the blaze exploded.

Nienaber’s medical history has given him reason to hope that the two World Cup winners can still join the Springboks, perhaps even in time for the two warm-up tests against Georgia before the Lions series.

“I worked in a burns unit as a physiotherapist for three years, so I understand the pain,” Nienaber explained.

“I told them, I understand the road you are going to take now and good luck, but luckily it’s superficial. It is very unfortunate and I feel sorry for them. It could have been much worse – there could have been children who caught fire.

“Accidents happen like that. I’m just thankful that they’re okay, and it’s not going to be a lasting or scary thing, and they’re going to get away with it.

“Is it ideal for me as a head coach? No I wish they had been okay and practicing and all that, but unfortunately it’s an accident and it happened and we just have to try now to make plans to fit them in as quickly as possible. possible while taking care of their well-being and well-being.


Sky Television has secured crucial broadcast rights to rugby, which is likely to bolster its sporting war chest after cricket hemorrhaged and the Rugby World Cup to compete with Spark.

Snyman and de Allende will see a burn specialist again on Friday and Nienaber will have a better idea of ​​their abilities to return to South Africa after this crucial consultation.

“I’ve talked to both of them and they’re okay, which is most important, and their families are okay. They see the specialist who takes care of their burns and every time he clears them to fly they will be on a plane that will bring us back, bearing in mind that this just gives them a few days to sort out the logistics in terms booking the flight, ”he said.

“Will they be able to play against Georgia? Currently, as I am sitting here, if everything goes according to plan, I think they will. The challenge is whether they get an infection or if for some medical reason they can’t reach us as soon as possible, which makes things a little more difficult. In this regard, we will have to adapt, and this is something that unfortunately cannot be controlled.

“It’s going to be determined by how quickly their wounds heal and when they can get on a plane, come here and start training again. It could take anywhere from two to four weeks.

“We just have to wait and see, but currently sitting here I’m a very optimistic guy, and they’ll be good from a burn point of view.”

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Damian De Allende and RG Snyman helped the Springboks win the World Cup in 2019 and now have to work hard to get in shape for the next mission against the Lions.

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