Redelinghuys' future still in doubt
Cape Town - Lions and Springbok prop Julian Redelinghuys is still hopeful of a return to rugby despite doctors not being as optimistic about his chances of lacing up his boots again.
Redelinghuys sustained a serious neck injury during last year's Currie Cup semi-final between the Free State Cheetahs and Golden Lions in Bloemfontein.
Redelinghuys was stretchered off the field early in the second half of the Free State Cheetahs' 55-17 victory.
The Bok tighthead twisted his neck in a collision with Cheetahs hooker, Torsten van Jaarsveld.
Lions team doctor Rob Collins confirmed at the time that Redelinghuys sustained a "dislocation" of his neck at the C5/6 level.
Redelinghuys underwent surgery immediately after the incident, and missed the Currie Cup final as well as the Boks' 2016 end of year tour to Europe.
He posted a message on his Instagram account after returning home from hospital, praising God and the people who wished him well.
"The rehabilitation is going really well," Redelinghuys told Netwerk24 on Monday.
"I haven't yet been to a doctor who thinks it's a good idea for me to play again, but I still have hope. What they are saying makes sense. This was after all my second neck operation," Redelinghuys added.
Redelinghuys, 27, represented SA Schools in 2006 and 2007 and was a member of the SA Junior Boks at the 2009 IRB Junior World Championship in Japan where the team finished third.
He made his Super Rugby debut for the Lions in 2014 and to date has played 47 matches.
Redelinghuys has also represented the Springboks on 8 occasions.
Ironically considering the scene of Redelinghuys' injury, the Lions will open their 2017 Super Rugby campaign against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday, February 25 at 15:05.