JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Prop Coenie Oosthuizen's injury-enforced absence from the rest of the rugby test series against England is a major blow for the Springboks, forwards coach Johann van Graan said on Tuesday.
Oosthuizen has a mildly bulging disc in his neck, according to team doctor Craig Roberts, and will be out of action for between two and three months.
"Coenie is still a young player and has a long career ahead of him and needs to be managed appropriately," Roberts said. "We will follow a conservative approach with him."
The 23-year-old Oosthuizen made his debut off the bench in the first test against England in Durban and Van Graan said he had made an impact.
"He showed in the first test what he can do and his injury is a big loss for us, especially since he can play both tighthead and loosehead," Van Graan told reporters.
The second test is in Johannesburg on Saturday.
(Reporting by Ken Borland; Editing by Clare Fallon)