Johannesburg - Bulls midfielder Wynand Olivier is likely to miss his side's Super Rugby season opener against the Sharks on February 24.
The most capped centre in the Bulls' Super Rugby history is keen to add to his 87 caps and 25 tries in the Loftus Versfeld opener, but he is still on the mend from an operation to repair a broken bone in his wrist.
According to Bulls team doctor Org Strauss, the vice captain's anticipated return to the field will be in two weeks' time.
"Chances are slim that the Springbok midfielder will be available at inside centre against the Sharks," the Bulls said in a statement on Wednesday.
"Francois Venter played well in that position against the Cheetahs in last week's friendly in Polokwane and is firm favourite to start in the number 12 jersey."
Strauss had good news with regards to the injuries to Pierre Spies (calf strain), Jacques Potgieter (back), Dewald Potgieter (ankle) and Flip van der Merwe (calf), reporting that all will be back to full training next week.
Warwick Tecklenburg has also fully recovered from his shoulder operation and will be available for selection.
Morne Mellett (shoulder, three weeks) and Rossouw de Klerk (foot, three months) are the other longer term injuries, while Fudge Mabeta (knee, eight months) is out for the whole of the Super Rugby season.