Sav­age’s fit­ness bat­tle

Gloucestershire Echo - - RUGBY UNION -

TOM Sav­age faces a bat­tle to be fit for what would be his last game for Glouces­ter at King­sholm.

The lock failed a late fit­ness test be­fore Sun­day’s derby against Worces­ter War­riors due to a calf prob­lem and could miss out on the fi­nal home game of the sea­son against bottom side New­cas­tle on Satur­day be­fore he moves on to join Ja­panese side Sun­tory Sun­go­liath in the sum­mer.

Glouces­ter head coach Jo­han Ack­er­mann said: “I think it’s go­ing to be 50-50, we’ll see.

“I doubt if he’s go­ing to make it but it’s a bit of a downer for him be­cause in the back of my mind I wanted to play him be­cause it’s his last home game.

“At this mo­ment if I had to guess it would be touch and go be­cause of the injury.”

For­mer club cap­tain Sav­age has made 192 ap­pear­ances in eight years at King­sholm, becoming a huge fans’ favourite after join­ing from Hart­pury.

De­spite fall­ing down the peck­ing or­der this sea­son with Ed Slater and South Africa in­ter­na­tional Franco Mostert form­ing a good part­ner­ship in the sec­ond row, Sav­age is held in high es­teem by Ack­er­mann.

“Tom to me can start any time,” said Ack­er­mann. “He’s been so con­sis­tent over the last two seasons that I’ve been here, his per­for­mances, he’s just been un­lucky not to play.

“He could eas­ily have started on Sun­day, he’s got all the qual­i­ties and the re­al­ity is some­times it counted against him that I had two back row­ers on the bench in­stead of a lock. It wasn’t his fault, it was just a se­lec­tion choice.

“I feel be­cause of the ser­vice he’s given the club he does de­serve to start just to get that last Shed cheer.”

Ack­er­mann still hopes to have prop Ruan Dreyer, lock Ger­brandt Grob­ler and backs Tom Mar­shall, Tom Hud­son and Ol­lie Thor­ley back be­fore the end of the sea­son with Glouces­ter hav­ing at least three fix­tures left in­clud­ing the play-off semi-fi­nal.

I doubt if he’s go­ing to make it but it’s a bit of a downer for him be­cause in the back of my mind I wanted to play him be­cause it’s his last home game Jo­han Ack­er­mann on Tom Sav­age

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