GENERAL

Springboks invite another uncapped rookie amid Kolbe concern

Celimpilo Gumede received his first Springbok call-up on Monday following the release of double Rugby World Cup-winning wing Cheslin Kolbe, who will undergo a medical examination for a knee niggle.

Kolbe, who was named among 35 players for the Springboks’ first training camp of the year, joined his team-mates in the country’s capital city on Sunday evening, but he was released on Monday to examine the extent of niggle which he picked up during his regular Japanese club season.

BULLS ALLOW STAR LOOSE FORWARD TO JOIN BOK CAMP

The Vodacom Bulls – who will face Leinster in their Vodacom United Rugby Championship semi-final at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday – agreed to release the uncapped Gumede, who attended the last Springbok alignment camp, to join the training squad. The group now includes 20 forwards and 15 backline players.

“Celimpilo has been playing impressive rugby this season and we are excited to see how he integrates in the squad and what he has to offer at training,” said Springbok head coach Rassie Erasmus.

“We would like to extend our gratitude to the Vodacom Bulls for allowing him to join us at short notice, especially at such an important point of their Vodacom URC season.”

The Springboks will conclude the first week of their training camp on Friday and will re-assemble on Sunday. The team that will face Wales in the opening Test of the season at Twickenham will be named next week Tuesday, with the squad set to depart for London a day later, next Wednesday evening.

SPRINGBOKS’ FULL 2024 TEST SCHEDULE

Mid-year Test fixtures

Saturday, 22 June: Springboks vs Wales (Twickenham, London)
Saturday, 6 July: SA vs Ireland (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria)
Saturday, 13 July: Springboks vs Ireland (Hollywoodbets Kings Park, Durban)
Saturday, 20 July: SA vs Portugal (Toyota Stadium, Bloemfontein)

Rugby Championship fixtures

Saturday, 10 August: Australia vs SA (Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane)
Saturday, 17 August: Australia vs SA (Optus Stadium, Perth)
Saturday, 31 August: Springboks vs New Zealand (Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg)
Saturday, 7 September: SA v New Zealand (DHL Stadium, Cape Town)
Saturday, 21 September: Argentina v Springboks (Estadio Unico Madre de Ciudades, Santiago)
Saturday, 28 September: SA v Argentina (Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit)

End-of-year-tour fixtures

Sunday, 10 November: Scotland vs Springboks (Murrayfield, Edinburgh)
Saturday, 16 November: England vs SA (Twickenham, London)
Saturday, 23 November: Wales vs Springboks (Principality Stadium, Cardiff)

Bulls Celimpilo Gumede has joined the Springboks. Image: Vodacom Bulls/Supplied

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