The off-season overseas ventures by South African players to fill their pockets have struck once again. The Bulls will be without Springbok lock RG Snyman for up to eight weeks, who will join hooker Jaco Visagie on the sidelines. Both sustained ankle injuries overseas.
Snyman has returned from his stint in Japan with an ankle injury that will keep him out for up to eight weeks. It could see him miss the first six Super Rugby matches of which four are derbies.
Snyman played for the Honda Heat in the Top League after the Springboks year-end tour when he suffered the injury while Visagie played for Johan Ackermann’s Gloucester side.
The big lock will undergo surgery on Tuesday and all being well, he should be back in action by the end of March.
By then the Bulls will have played six of their 16 Super Rugby matches, including one each against the Stormers, the Lions, Chiefs and Jaguares and two against the Sharks.
The Bulls are, however, well-covered at lock where they also have captain Lood de Jager and fellow-Springbok Jason Jenkins ‒ also back from his stint in Japan.
However, Hanro Liebenberg will be able to provide cover at lock and relieve their burden in what is a long and important rugby year. Liebenberg has just completed his stint with Stade Francais where he played as a lock under coach Heyneke Meyer.
With the Bulls depth among the loose forwards, Jannes Kirsten could also be used as a lock when needed.
There was also good news for the Bulls. Team doctor Herman Rossouw confirmed that both hooker Jaco Visagie and Springbok wing Travis Ismaiel underwent successful surgeries last week.
Visagie is expected to make his return in six weeks’ time. Ismaiel, who had a revision of his shoulder, received the good news that he will be out for a further eight weeks and not three months as expected.