Cape Town - Springbok flank Jaco Kriel may be back in the Lions camp but he is not expected to feature for the Johannesburg outfit anytime soon.
It was confirmed earlier in the week that Kriel has signed a three-year deal with the Lions, but according to Netwerk24, the 30-year-old is still doing rehabilitation after an ankle operation in December.
Kriel is only expected to make a return to the playing field in April.
He was on the Lions' books between 2010 and 2018, before joining English club Gloucester where former Lions mentor Johan Ackermann is the head coach.
Kriel had a torrid time at Kingsholm, with injuries limiting him to just 16 appearances and is hoping the move back to the Lions could re-ignite his career.
"Yes, things didn't quite work out there. But it was still a good thing for me to go because I would always have wondered about it if I didn't take the chance," Kriel said.
Kriel was a star performer during his time at the Lions, playing a big role in the team making three consecutive Super Rugby finals between 2016 and 2018.
He also played 11 Tests for the Springboks between 2016 and 2017.
- Compiled by Herman Mostert