MARSEILLE- Springbok wing Makazole Mapimpi could possibly be out of the rest of the Rugby World Cup.
Bok coach Jacques Nienaber confirmed after his side’s bonus point 49-18 Pool B Rugby World Cup victory over Tonga that Mapimpi sustained a fractured cheekbone after he clashed heads with a Tongan player.
He was replaced by Jesse Kriel who came on at outside centre with Canan Moodie moving to the wing.
“He unfortunately had a blow-out fracture of his cheekbone, so he’ll probably go for specialist scans tomorrow morning to determine the severity of it,” Nienaber said after the game.
The Springboks will have a bye next week before the quarter-finals the following week.
“The positive is it is pretty much similar to what we experienced in 2019 when we also finished our pool quite early.
“I think we had a 12-13 day preparation break before we went into our quarter-final against Japan. It is something we have done before as a group. It worked out well for us back then so we’ll give them two-three days off and then start preparing.
“Until we know what the outcome is of the pool and who we will face, the France-New Zealand pool will only be determined on Friday night so we will only actually know, depending on how (Pool B) finish, we will have a good idea of who we will play.
“I think in the first week now, give the guys some time off to get away from the game, to have a little bit of a mental break and then start focusing on what we can do better.
“So internally focusing on us on things we must improve if we want to stay in this competition until the end.”