Injured Springbok captain Jean de Villiers is determined to be fit and ready for the World Cup in September and October.
De Villiers, who turns 34 on 24 February, suffered a potentially career-ending knee injury in the Boks' final match of 2014 against Wales in Cardiff. However, he remains positive.
'I’ve started swimming and doing some exercises on a static bicycle,' said De Villiers. 'At the moment we’re still testing to see how the knee reacts to different movements and it’s looking good. It’s also great that we can count on the medical expertise of so many people and I’m grateful to everyone involved.'
Saru on Monday announced that the Springbok and Western Province medical teams would work together to ensure De Villiers is afforded every opportunity to make a successful comeback to the playing field in time for the World Cup.
Springbok team doctor Craig Roberts is in charge of the rehabilitation process. De Villiers will continue to work with Bok physiotherapist Rene Naylor on a daily basis, WP team doctor Jason Suter will handle his medical rehabilitation, while the orthopaedic surgeon who conducted the surgery on the Bok captain’s knee last month will also be consulted on a regular basis.
'It’s great to know we’re all pulling in the same direction as this is obviously a very important matter,' said Roberts. 'Luckily Jean is very positive about his rehabilitation and he’s already working incredibly hard to ensure everything remains on track for him to make it to the World Cup.
'Obviously it’s still too early in the process to confirm he will be ready for the tournament, but we’re taking it week by week and will be doing everything we can to get him to England.'
Photo: Michael Steele/Getty Images