Cape Town – The Sharks have firmly denied that flyhalf Pat Lambie is considering retirement following his latest concussion.
Lambie has had a worrying history of head knocks, the last of which came against the Kings on May 18 when he collided with team-mate Rhyno Smith in Port Elizabeth.
After the impact in what was Lambie’s first start since recovering from a fractured vertebra against the Waratahs on March 11, he tried to shake off the knock, but was substituted shortly before half-time.
He has not played since.
The following day reports out of Durban suggested that the 26-year-old’s continued struggles with head injuries could spell the end of his career.
Last June, Lambie was knocked out cold by Irish flank CJ Stander in the Springboks’ first Test of the year in Cape Town.
It was a sickening moment, and Lambie spent the next five months on the sidelines recovering.
Given how quiet the Sharks have been on his recovery from this latest knock, and considering his continued absence from the field in the SuperSport Challenge, there has been heightened concern over Lambie’s future.
Then, on Wednesday, when Netwerk24 reported that Stormers flyhalf Robert du Preez could be on his way to Durban, alarm bells started ringing once more.
When approached by Sport24 for an update on Lambie’s recovery and the speculation surrounding his future, the Sharks denied that the 56-Test veteran was contemplating stepping away from the sport.
“Pat is contracted to the Sharks for a further two years and there is no truth to the rumour that he is contemplating retirement,” the franchise said via e-mail.
“Our medical team has advised that he requires an extended period of time for his recovery.
“No set date has been determined for his return to play. He remains an important member of our squad and we at the Sharks family, like all rugby fans in our country, hope to see him back on the park soon.”
The Sharks are next in Super Rugby action when they take on the Bulls in Durban on Friday, June 30.
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