South Africa to make decision on Rugby Championship participation next week

World champions South Africa will decide next week whether they travel to Australia next month to take part in the Rugby Championship amid uncertainty over coronavirus travel restrictions and concern about the team's readiness.

Rugby South Africa said on Saturday "several hurdles needed to be cleared if it is to be confirmed" that the Springboks participate in the four-nation Southern Hemisphere championship in Australia from Nov. 7 to Dec. 12.

The South African government lifted the ban on international sporting participation one week ago but SA Rugby said it was seeking further clarification on the regulations.

"A final decision is likely to be finalised early next week once those clarifications had been assessed internally and with SA Rugby's SANZAAR partners," a statement added.

There has also been widespread concern in the rugby community that players are a long way from being ready for the intensity of the competition against Argentina, Australia and New Zealand. South African rugby returned to action only a fortnight ago after a long COVID-19 lockdown.

This weekend marks the re-start of the Super Rugby competition in South Africa while Super Rugby seasons have long been completed in Australia and New Zealand.