BREAKING: South Africa star rued out of the Rugby World Cup - Ruck

BREAKING: South Africa star rued out of the Rugby World Cup

South Africa have confirmed that hooker Malcolm Marx will miss the rest of Rugby World Cup 2023 with a knee injury.

The Springboks say that with “sufficient cover at hooker within the squad, he will not be replaced in the squad at this stage”.

Marx was named as one of two specialist hookers along with Mbongeni Mbonambi in the original squad, with the versatile Deon Fourie – who also plays in the back row – providing cover off the bench in their Pool B match against Romania in Bordeaux on Sunday. 

The defending champions beat Scotland 18-3 in their opening Pool B match in Marseille, with remaining fixtures against Romania on Sunday, 17 September, Ireland (23 September) and Tonga (1 October).

Marx was one of 21 players with previous Rugby World Cup experience named in the original squad, nine of whom are appearing at their third tournament. 

Fly-half Handre Pollard (calf), Lukhanyo Am (knee) and Lood de Jager (chest) are on standby with six other players who the coaches are hopeful may be available if called upon.

Eleven players – Ox Nche, Jean Kleyn, Marvin Orie, Marco van Staden, Jasper Wiese, Deon Fourie, Jaden Hendrikse, Grant Williams, Manie Libbok, Andre Esterhuizen, Kurt-Lee Arendse, Canan Moodie – are featuring at their first Rugby World Cup.

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Steven Kitshoff (Ulster – 74 caps, 10 points)
Vincent Koch (Cell C Sharks – 45 caps, 0 points)
Frans Malherbe (DHL Stormers – 61 caps, 5 points)
Ox Nche (Cell C Sharks – 19 caps, 0 points)
Trevor Nyakane (Racing 92 – 61 caps, 5 points)


Bongi Mbonambi (Cell C Sharks – 60 caps, 60 points)

Second row

Eben Etzebeth (Cell C Sharks – 112 caps, 25 points)
Jean Kleyn (Munster – 2 caps, 0 points)
Marvin Orie (Perpignan – 14 caps, 0 points) 
RG Snyman (Munster – 26 caps, 5 points)


Pieter-Steph du Toit (Toyota Verblitz – 69 caps, 30 points)
Siya Kolisi (captain – Racing 92 – 75 caps, 45 points)
Kwagga Smith (Shizuoka Blue Revs – 33 caps, 25 points)
Marco van Staden (Vodacom Bulls – 12 caps, 0 points)
Duane Vermeulen (SA Rugby – 68 caps, 15 points)
Jasper Wiese (Leicester – 22 caps, 5 points)

Utility forward

Deon Fourie (DHL Stormers – 7 caps, 0 points)
Franco Mostert (Honda Heat – 65 caps, 15 points)



Faf de Klerk (Canon Eagles – 48 caps, 44 points)
Jaden Hendrikse (Cell C Sharks – 12 caps, 12 points)
Cobus Reinach (Montpelllier – 25 caps, 45 points) 
Grant Williams (Cell C Sharks – 4 caps, 0 points)


Manie Libbok (DHL Stormers – 7 caps, 45 points)
Damian Willemse (DHL Stormers – 31 caps, 36 points)


Damian de Allende (Panasonic Wild Knights – 72 caps, 50 points)
Andre Esterhuizen (Harlequins – 13 caps, 0 points)
Jesse Kriel (Canon Eagles – 61 caps, 60 points)

Wing / full back

Kurt-Lee Arendse (Vodacom Bulls – 10 caps, 50 points)
Cheslin Kolbe (Suntory Sungoliath – 25 caps, 81 points)
Willie le Roux (Vodacom Bulls – 86 caps, 65 points)
Makazole Mapimpi (Cell C Sharks – 38 caps, 115 points)
Canan Moodie (Vodacom Bulls – 6 caps, 10 points)

Players replaced from original squad of 33: Malcolm Marx


Fullback: Israel Folau (Australia)

Owens said: “For me, it’s nip and tuck between Halfpenny and Folau, next to nothing to choose between them. Leigh is brilliant because under the high ball and with his kicking at goal under pressure. He may not always break the line when running but puts his body on the line in defence and is a top-notch match-winner.

“But I go for Folau – only just, I should stress – because of his ability to seemingly beat his man every time he gets the ball in his hand. He’s such an exciting player and like Leigh he is one of the best under the high ball.

“It’s a toss of a coin for me… and it’s come down in Folau’s favour.”

Winger: Stuart Hogg (Scotland)

Owens said: “How can you fail to be impressed when watching Hogg play. He’s so exciting as he burst into that line and, of course, was named Six Nations player of the tournament.

“I know he’s a full-back for Scotland, but he is so quick and direct he could easily play on the wing. He reminds me a bit of Shane Williams with some of the things he does.

“When you see who is on the other wing in my team, you’ll see how they would work brilliantly in tandem.”

Fixtures for the Six Nations - Round 1

Outside-centre: Brian O’Driscoll (Ireland)

Owens said: “Not only is he one of the greatest centres in the history of rugby union but he’s a fantastic man off the field as well. O’Driscoll has been a wonderful ambassador for the sport and a real leader. He always respected referees and set the right example for others to follow.

“A legend of the game who conducted himself superbly, on and off the pitch.”

Inside-centre: Ma’a Nonu (New Zealand)

Owens said: “He’s another brilliant player and after every game, win or lose, he would come up and give me a hug. Ma’a has always found time at after-match functions or at breakfast if we’ve been staying at the same hotel to come over and have a chat.

“What a player, mind, too. One of the stalwarts of the New Zealand side for so many years.”

Winger: Shane Williams (Wales)

Owens said: “When people ask me who is the best player I have refereed it’s pretty much an impossible task to pick one because I’ve been lucky enough to take charge of so many greats.

“But if I’m pushed, I would pick Shane for what he achieved after coming from football at 17 or 18 years of age.

“He was in the mould of Gerald Davies in how he left defenders gasping for air as he beat them with those dazzling sidesteps. Nobody would fancy defending against a back three of Shane, Hogg and Folau, I can tell you that.”