After nearly four years in an injury cloud, former Springbok fly-half Derick Hougaard is targeting a comeback to professional rugby.
The former Bulls pivot was in his third season at Saracens when an Achilles tendon injury forced him out of the squad in 2012.
Hougaard has been struggling ever since but is hopeful that his visit to a South African orthopaedist on February 1 will bring him good news and signal a potential return to his beloved Loftus Versveld.
The fly-half's goals kicking efforts for the Bulls franchise earned him the accolade of 'Liefling van Loftus' – an Afrikaans phrase meaning sweetheart of Loftus.
Hougaard notched up 399 Super rugby points for the Bulls during his 43 appearances.
"I have that burning desire in my heart to play again," Rapport quotes the 33-year-old as saying.
"I want my last rugby chapter to be at Loftus. I'm excited about the opportunity to play again, but also realistic about it. I don't want to put all my hopes on it and be disappointed again if it's ultimately not possible.
"But I don't want to regret one day that I didn't try to make a return. Therefore, I decided to get a second and third opinion on my injury."