Nothing has been signed
Reports that Cheetahs captain and hooker Adriaan Strauss has signed for the Bulls may be a case of 'jumping the gun'.
It was suggested that Strauss is set to leave Bloemfontein and has already signed for the Bulls in Pretoria - to captain them in 2015.
According to these reports Strauss has "rejected" a contract extension with the Cheetahs.
However, the veteran Springbok's agent, Stephan Weyers, denied that he has signed with the Bulls.
"He has not signed anywhere," Weyers told rugby365 in an interview.
"His contract [with the Cheetahs] expires at the end of October," the agent added.
The Bulls are officially only allowed to start negotiating with the player from Tuesday, July 1.
However, the fact that he did not sign the contract extension sparked the rumours that he is walking out.
He may yet take up an offer from the Bulls, but it is not a fait accompli.
The 28-year-old hooker, who was schooled at Grey College in Bloemfontein, started his professional career at the Bulls - where he played eight Super Rugby matches.
Strauss returned to Bloemfontein in 2007 and has made 95 Super Rugby appearances.
Strauss also has 34 Test caps for the Springboks.
There is no doubt that if the Bulls do win the tug-of-war for the burly front row forward's services, it will be a loss of epic proportions for the Cheetahs.
As it is, the Cheetahs are set to be without a host of seasoned players next year.
These include fullback Hennie Daniller (to Zebre in Italy), utility back Riaan Smit (Oyonnax, France), lock Rynhardt Landman (Newport Gwent Dragons, Wales), prop Nick Schonert (Worcester Warriors, England), scrumhalf Kevin Luiters (EP Kings), lock Andries Ferreira (Zebre), centre Johan Sadie (NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes, Japan), No.8 Phillip van der Walt (Biarritz, France) and flyhalf Johan Goosen (Racing Metro, France).
By Jan de Koning