Cowan fit for Springboks clash

New Zealand scrum-half Jimmy Cowan has been passed fit to travel with the All Blacks squad for their Tri Nations clash with South Africa a week on Saturday.

New Zealand scrum-half Jimmy Cowan has been passed fit to travel with the All Blacks squad for their Tri Nations clash with South Africa a week on Saturday.

The 28-year-old was a doubt after being forced to miss Saturday’s 20-10 victory over Australia in Christchurch due to a rib injury suffered in the 49-28 win over the Wallabies in Melbourne.

The Highlanders captain was named in coach Graham Henry’s 26-man squad for the clash with the Springboks at Soccer City in Johannesburg, but Alby Mathewson was placed on standby as cover in the event that Cowan failed a fitness test.

But All Blacks doctor Deb Robinson said: “Jimmy had a medical assessment in Christchurch today and passed that so he’s fit to travel to South Africa with the team.

“He basically needed rest and recuperation to get over the injury, which he has had, and is now keen to get back to training.”

Cowan’s availability provides Henry with a selection headache, with Piri Weepu having also shown impressive form in the number nine jersey.

New Zealand will need just a single point from their clash with the world champions to secure a 10th Tri Nations crown, having won their first four fixtures in this year’s competition.

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