South Africa have confirmed that attack coach Swys de Bruin has stepped down from his role ahead of the World Cup that kicks-off in Japan next month.
De Bruin joined Springboks as an attack consultant in 2018 but has now decided to leave due to “personal and medical reasons”.
South Africa Rugby revealed that the 59-year-old was last part of the South Africa back-room staff during the 16-16 draw against New Zealand in Wellington and had sought the help of a mental health practitioner before returning to the Lions.
South Africa director of rugby Rassie Erasmus expressed shock on de Bruin's decision but is confident that the team management can overcome the setback ahead of the showpiece event.
“Swys made a great contribution to the squad in his time with us and I’d like to thank him on behalf of his fellow management and the players he has worked with in the past 12 months,” said Erasmus.
“He brought a fresh perspective to one facet of the game and he’ll be hard to replace. I’d also like to thank the Lions Company PTY for releasing him to us and SA Rugby for supporting his appointment.
"This was not something we were expecting but our planning has been thorough and it’s something we can manage.”
After winning the Rugby Championship title, South Africa will face Argentina and Japan before they kick-start their World Cup campaign against New Zealand in Yokohama on 21st September.