Pretoria - Springbok lock Flip van der Merwe has committed his future to the Blue Bulls Company after renewing his contract with them until the end of the 2014 season.
The burly lock, who has played 71 times for the Bulls in Super Rugby, successfully stepped into the void left by Bakkies Botha.
"It was an easy decision for me to make," Van der Merwe said.
"I originally came to Pretoria to learn from Springbok legends like Victor Matfield and Bakkies Botha and I have learnt a lot from them.
"I love my rugby here and feel I have a lot more to contribute to the Bulls and their fans in the future."
Coach Frans Ludeke was delighted at Van der Merwe's decision to stay in the Bulls family.
"Flip has been one of the most committed, hard-working players at the Bulls and he is the rock in our pack of forwards that always gives 100 percent," Ludeke said.
"We are ecstatic to have him here to continue to contribute to the Bulls success."