The Lions have released four players for the Currie Cup tournament to take up overseas contracts before returning.
The trio of Elton Jantjies (NTT Shining Arcs), Lionel Mapoe (Kubota Spears) and Warwick Tecklenburg (Kamaishi) are all heading to Japan until next February, while hooker Armand van der Merwe is off to Racing 92 on what appears to be a short-term deal as cover for the World Cup.
All four players are set to return to the Lions for the 2016 Super Rugby season and high performance manager Bart Schoeman is confident the players will benefit from the experience.
"Following on from last year's successful placement abroad, Lions Rugby has opted to selectively release a group of players for the Currie Cup tournament again this season," he said.
"We believe that sending this group of players abroad for several months will not only benefit them as players but will also benefit the Union immensely, as we look to develop the young talent we have available here and give a new talent pool the opportunity to perform in the Currie Cup.
"This was a great success in 2014 and we are hoping to replicate that this season."