South Africa recall Lukhanyo Am into Rugby World Cup squad

South Africa recall Lukhanyo Am into Rugby World Cup squad

The Springboks have recalled outside centre Lukhanyo Am into their squad for the Rugby World Cup as an injury replacement for winger Makazole Mapimpi.

Mapimpi suffered a fractured eye socket and cheekbone in Sunday™s 49-18 victory over Tonga, ruling him out of the remainder of the tournament.

That has created the opening for Am, a member of the Springboks' 2019 Rugby World Cup winning team, who did not make the Boks' initial 33-man World Cup squad due to a knee injury suffered in the Boks' win over Argentina in Buenos Aires in early August.

However, Am is set to rejoin the squad in Toulon this week, having returned to training as part of his ongoing rehabilitation.

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He is the second injury replacement to the 33-man squad following the call-up of flyhalf Handre Pollard for hooker Malcolm Marx. Pollard made a successful return to the team against Tonga on Sunday.

Earlier in the day, South Africa's Director of Rugby had spoken of the team's sadness following the news that Mapimpi had been ruled out of any further action in France.

"We are sad for Mapimpi," said Erasmus. "He fractured his eye socket and cheek bone, so he'll be out for four to six weeks.

"It's sad because he'll be out for the rest of the tournament.

"We won't just miss him as a brilliant rugby player, but what he brings to the team is a lot of heart and honesty.

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"He doesn't say a lot, but when he does, everybody listens. He trains hard and he communicates well on the field.

"He never moans if he's not selected, and he helps the younger players who come through.

"If we get to the final, we'll fly him and Malcolm Marx back."

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