In what would be a colossal blow to Western Province’s Currie Cup final aspirations, ace Springbok prop Steven Kitshoff may be ruled out of Saturday’s semifinal playoff against the Sharks at Newlands.
Province backline coach Dawie Snyman confirmed on Tuesday during a virtual media briefing that Kitshoff had to be withdrawn from training.
“At this stage it’s precautionary and we have to check one or two issues on him. We will probably know by Wednesday afternoon if he is available,” said Snyman.
“Kitsie is isolated due to Covid protocols so we just need to check his history in terms of close contacts and await a final call from the doctors.”
Should he become unavailable, the Bok front-ranker is likely to be replaced as Province captain by the returning Siya Kolisi, who similarly missed the last few matches of the Cape Town side’s campaign due to Covid protocols.
Kolisi has also recently been linked with a Sharks move, while there has been speculation that others like hooker Bongi Mbonambi and fullback Damian Willemse might be heading to the Bulls and flanker Jaco Coetzee to Bath in England.
But, right now, said Snyman, their focus is solely on their forthcoming semifinal assignment against the Sharks after Province’s last two scheduled regular season games fell by the wayside.
“It almost feels like a month that we have been preparing for this game, so the plans will stay the same. We haven’t had to change too much in our prep this week,” said Snyman.