Sport / Rugby

Heinz Schenk
1 minute read
30 Oct 2018
8:59 am

‘Touchy’ Mostert drama messes with Springbok plans

Heinz Schenk

Rassie Erasmus won't have his first-choice No 5 available against England as the fight between the Lions and Gloucester takes its toll.

Franco Mostert. Photo: Gallo Images.

The messy tug-of-war between the Lions and Gloucester over Franco Mostert has now affected the Springboks too.

National coach Rassie Erasmus admitted that the dispute took its toll and means the tireless lock won’t be considered for Saturday’s Test against England at Twickenham.

“It’s a touchy feely thing at this stage,” said the Bok mentor.

“We just felt personally that Franco needs to settle in at Gloucester and decided not to involve him. If we went into the detail we probably could’ve selected him but it’s not worth going into that.”

The Lions had claimed there were discrepancies in Gloucester’s offer for the 27-year-old, though much of the union’s strategy actually relied on Mostert’s agent, Eduard Kelder, being suspended for three years over his questionable code of conduct.

However, it seems the whole saga has come to a head and Mostert is now back with former Lions coach Johan Ackermann at the English club.

“Naturally it’s a disruption. Franco is a great player and he will be missed. But we’ve got some options and it’s only fair to help him settle.”

It’s expected that the versatile Pieter-Steph du Toit will partner Eben Etzebeth in the second row.

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