Rugby Championship: Flip van der Merwe ruled out of decider

Last Updated: 30/09/13 12:08pm

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Flip Van der Merwe: Misses Championship decider

Flip Van der Merwe: Misses Championship decider

Sky Bet

South Africa lock Flip van der Merwe has been ruled out of Saturday's Rugby Championship decider against New Zealand after being banned for a week.

Van der Merwe was given a yellow card for striking Australia's Joe Tomane with his forearm whilst attempting a tackle during Saturday's match in Cape Town.

The giant lock was later cited, on the grounds that the offence merited a red card.

SANZAR, the southern hemisphere's rugby authority, held a judicial hearing on Monday and found van der Merwe guilty of striking Tomane.

The lock denied that the blow was intentional and was handed the minimum sanction in account of his previous good disciplinary record, and the fact he showed concern towards the winger at the time of the incident.

Franco van der Merwe, the Golden Lions lock, has been called into the squad to replace the Blue Bulls man.

Coach Heyneke Meyer said: "Losing any player, for whatever reasons, is never ideal but Franco knows our structures and plans very well, having been part of the squad since June last year."

South Africa must beat the All Blacks by more than seven points and score at least four tries in the process at Ellis Park on Saturday if they are to win the Rugby Championship title.

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