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Van der Merwe ruled out for Clermont trip

───   MORGAN PIEK 15:23 Mon, 01 Apr 2024

Van der Merwe ruled out for Clermont trip | News Article
Marnus van der Merwe - Morgan Piek

“Marnus won't be able to go with us as his injury is a little worse than we initially thought. Chucky is going to start against Clermont, and then Marko Janse van Rensburg is also going with, and he will play off the bench.”

The Toyota Cheetahs have been dealt a big blow ahead of their EPCR Challenge Cup round of 16 game against Clermont in France on Saturday.

The in-form hooker, Marnus van der Merwe, has been ruled of for the knockout game after sustaining a calf injury on the weekend during the 76-5 win against the Leopards in Potchefstroom.

The Cheetahs are heading to France with the goal of becoming the first Free State team to reach the quarter-finals of the Challenge Cup.

Van der Merwe is the first-choice hooker at the Cheetahs until he leaves for Scarlets in Wales later in the year.

The Cheetahs coach, Izak van der Westhuizen, told OFM Sport Van der Merwe will definitely miss the tour to France and that Marko Janse van Rensburg will go as the back up hooker to the Namibian international Chucky van der Westhuizen.

“Marnus won't be able to go with us as his injury is a little worse than we initially thought,” said Van der Westhuizen.

“Chucky is going to start against Clermont, and then Marko Janse van Rensburg is also going with, and he will play off the bench.

Van der Westhuizen and Janse van Rensburg is the real deal and just needs a bit of game time, which is something he hasn't had much of as he is behind Van der Merwe and Van der Westhuizen in the pecking order.

Marko Janse van Rensburg - Morgan Piek

“Marko also had a bit of big injury where it took him a bit of time to recover. He didn't do the full preseason. I think he is a good player - he has a good lineout throw, good in the scrums and he is good in the general play.

“The more game time he gets, the better he will get.”

The Cheetahs fly to France at 14:00 on Tuesday afternoon and Saturday’s game against Clermont kicks off at 13:30.

Morgan Piek OFM Sport

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