Cape Town – The Bulls are eagerly awaiting the arrival of Tongan centre Nafi Tuitavake.
According to Netwerk24, the Bulls wanted Tuitavake to play in their warm-up matches against UP-Tuks on Saturday, but a delay in the player’s visa meant he could not board a plane to South Africa.
He recently signed a two-year deal with the Pretoria franchise.
Bulls CEO Alfons Meyer said Tuitavake remained stranded in New Zealand.
“We’re in daily contact with his agent. We’re eagerly awaiting his visa to be approved,” said Meyer, who added that Tuitavake would not be in Pretoria before Monday.
Tuitavake, 30, has played 14 Tests for Tonga and was a member of their Rugby World Cup squad in Japan last year.
He grew up in New Zealand and represented North Harbour and the Crusaders, as well as Agen in France and Northampton Saints in England.
He is the younger brother of former All Black wing Anthony Tuitavake.
The Bulls, meanwhile, will face Tuks in two warm-up matches on at the Tuks Stadium on Saturday.
Kick-off times for the two matches are at 09:00 and 11:00.
Bulls (warm-up match 1):
15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Burger Odendaal (captain), 11 Rosko Specman, 10 Chris Smith, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Muller Uys, 7 Wian Vosloo, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Jaundre Kruger, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Wiehahn Herbst, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Simphiwe Matanzima
Substitutes: 16 Louis van der Westhuizen, 17 Dayan van der Westhuizen, 18 Ian Groenewald, 19 Marius Verwey, 20 Jean Droste, 21 David Coetzer, 22 Dawid Kellerman, 23 Diego Appolis, 24 Tim Agaba
Bulls (warm-up match 2):
15 Richard Kriel, 14 Jade Stighling, 13 Marnus Potgieter, 12 Dylan Sage, 11 Divan Rossouw, 10 Manie Libbok, 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Josh Strauss, 7 Abongile Nonkontwana, 6 Jeandre Rudolph, 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Ryno Pieterse, 3 Mornay Smith, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Gerhard Steenekamp
Substitutes: 16 Corniel Els, 17 Madot Mabokela, 18 Adre Smith, 19 Ewan Coetzee, 20 Marco Jansen van Vuren, 21 Morne Steyn, 22 Jay-Cee Nel, 23 Franco Naude, 24 Vaughen Isaacs
– Compiled by Herman Mostert