Cape Town - Springbok lock Flip van der Merwe says there is enough leadership in the team to fill the void left by Jean de Villiers.
The Springbok captain suffered a horrific knee injury in last Saturday's Test against Wales in Cardiff. He faces an extended period on the sidelines and could even miss next year's Rugby World Cup in England and Wales.
While losing De Villiers would be a big blow, Van der Merwe feels there are enough leaders in the squad for coach Heyneke Meyer to call on.
"It's one of Heyneke's big success stories during his time as coach. He concentrated on establishing a leadership group. of which Jean merely acts as manager," Van der Merwe told Netwerk24.
"It's obviously bad losing Jean, but I think any guy can walk in and take over the reins. A number of provincial captains play on the national team, so I don't think we’ll have any problems in that regard.
"Modern-day teams do not depend on only one or two guys when it comes to leadership. We have a lot of decision makers at different levels and areas in the team."
Van der Merwe, 29, hopes to be back in action next year after missing a big part the 2014 season due to a knee injury. He recently also injured his shoulder while training with the Bulls.
Van der Merwe tore a pectoral muscle while doing dips in a gym session to regain his fitness along with his provincial team-mates.
While the off-season will mean more recovery and rehabilitation for Van der Merwe, he is confident he could be back in action by late January, meaning there is still a good chance he will be ready for the Bulls first game in next year’s Super Rugby series.