Springbok prop Coenie Oosthuizen's injury woes took another turn when he suffered a fresh setback at Newlands on Saturday.
Oosthuizen left the field in the first half of the Cheetahs' loss to Western Province and was subsequently taken to hospital to have x-rays on his back.
This comes after the versatile prop was recently given the all-clear by a neurosurgeon following a series of neck injuries in the last year.
Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske said that whilst he did not want to speculate on the seriousness of the new injury, he is hopeful that it is not related to the concerns over his neck.
He told this website: "We are not sure yet, he went for x-rays now so I don't want to speculate. It is his back, not his neck which was the problem the previous time.
"I don't have a medical degree or anything so it is difficult to say, the specialist that did the operation the previous time said that he can recover fully and today was his back, he has never had problems with his back so hopefully it won't be serious," added Drotske.
The Cheetahs coach said that the specialist who operated on Oosthuizen's neck had advised that he should play at tighthead, which is the position he played at school.
"He wants to play at tighthead and the specialist that he saw about his neck also feels that it will be better for his neck.
"He played tighthead at school and we played him at loosehead because he was still young and needed to come through the ranks, but we feel the time is now right to play him at tighthead," said Drotske.
Having broken down so many times already in his short career there will be serious concerns over the 23-year-old Oosthuizen's chances of making a full recovery as he has suffered constant setbacks which have seen him spend most of the last year on the sidelines
By Michael de Vries, at Newlands
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