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Saru: Jean de Villiers's surgery successful

De Villiers was forced out of the World Cup after a jaw injury in the match against Samoa on Saturday.

FILE: Jean de Villiers. Picture: Anthony Molyneaux/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Saru has announced that former Springbok captain Jean de Villiers has successfully completed the first step on his return to playing rugby when he underwent surgery on his broken jaw in Cape Town on Wednesday.

De Villiers was forced out of the Rugby World Cup following an impact to his jaw in the match against Samoa on Saturday. This was his second jaw injury in two months.

The 34-year-old de Villiers, who captained the Boks 37 times, has retired as the second most capped Springbok captain of all time, and is currently the fourth most capped player in the history of South African Test rugby, with 109.

The centre plans to continue playing, although he announced his international retirement following his exit.

"Jean had surgery in Cape Town this morning and the operation went well," says Springbok team doctor Craig Roberts. "The fractured jaw was plated and his wisdom teeth were removed."

Saru says de Villiers is recuperating at home and a decision on returning to England to support the Springbok team will be made in due course.

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