Georgia rugby coach in South African hospital with lung damage

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Two Georgia players attempt to halt South Africa captain Siya Koliis (C) during a Test in Pretora this month

Georgia national rugby coach Levan Maisashvili has suffered lung damage and is on a ventilator in a South African hospital after contracting coronavirus, an official told AFP on Monday.

He came to South Africa this month for a two-Test series and fell ill after Georgia lost the first game in Pretoria. The second international was cancelled after Covid-19 outbreaks in both camps.

"Everything is being done to improve the condition of coach Levan, whose condition is stable. He has suffered lung damage and is on a ventilator," a Georgian rugby official said.

"He is being treated at a top-level South African clinic, which is equipped with the most modern medical equipment to manage Covid patients."

Five Georgian players who also contracted the virus have recovered and returned home.

The pandemic has badly affected the Georgian team during July. Not only was the second Test in South Africa cancelled, but also a home international against Scotland.

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