Cape Town - Adi Jacobs believes Springbok captain Jean de Villiers has the experience and ability to make a successful comeback ahead of the Rugby World Cup.
On Monday evening, it was announced that De Villiers would be working with the Springbok and Western Province medical staff over the next couple of months to give himself the best opportunity of recovering in time ahead of the World Cup, which kicks off in September.
De Villiers suffered a serious knee injury in South Africa's final Test last year against Wales in Cardiff.
One player who has been in a similar position is former Springbok centre Jacobs, who has made successful recoveries from knee injuries during his career.
Jacobs also played alongside De Villiers in the Springbok setup between 2002 and 2011.
"He's definitely a special player. He's one of the great heroes of South African rugby," Jacobs told MyPlayers.co.za.
"It's not easy to push hard through recovery, especially after a serious knee injury. But if Jean backs himself and believes he can do it, then he has a good chance. At the end of the day, the decision lies with him."
Jacobs last played with De Villiers in the Springboks' 21-11 win over England at Twickenham in 2010. They also paired in the first two Test wins during the British and Irish Lions series in 2009.
"Jean still has something to offer the Springboks, especially as a leader," said Jacobs.
"He has the experience to know what needs to be done to be ready in time. I wish him well. If he does make it for the World Cup, it should be an amazing fairytale ending to a great career."
The 2015 Rugby World Cup, to be staged in England and Wales, runs from September 18-October 31.
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