Springbok flyer Bryan Habana will miss at least a month of Super 14 action after undergoing surgery on a finger injury last week.
Habana, the 2007 World Player of the Year, picked up the injury in the Bulls' big win over the Blues. He damaged a bone in the ring finger on his right hand and had to have a steel pint inserted.
"It was a clean break of a metatarsal and the surgeon has put a pin in to repair the break. Maybe it won't be a bad thing for him to have a break," said Habana's agent, his father, Bernie.
"He is obviously very upset and wants to play, but I believe he'll come back from this refreshed and will go on to have a great season. The good thing about this injury is that he can do other training, such as working on leg speed.
"Bryan will go down to the Sports Science Institute for a series of tests under professor Tim Noakes, who last year already felt that Bryan had played too much rugby."
While the injury will eat into Habana's on-field build-up to this summer's clash with the British & Irish Lions, one player's hopes of playing against the tourists look to be over.
Sharks flanker Jean Deysel is likely to miss the rest of the season after tearing knee ligaments against the Chiefs in Hamilton.