Cape Town - Springbok scrumhalf Faf de Klerk may not feature in all of the national team's matches in this year's Rugby Championship.
De Klerk plies his trade at English club Sale Sharks and it appears as though the club is not eager for him to play in all six of South Africa’s matches in the southern hemisphere competition.
This follows after a report emerged on the Rugby Pass website on Tuesday that fullback Willie le Roux - who plays for Wasps in England - would only be available for three of the Boks’ matches in the competition.
A spokesperson for Sale told Netwerk24 that there was “not an agreement as such” involving De Klerk but added: “I think all involved parties would have to compromise to make sure everyone is happy.”
It could help explain why Bok coach Rassie Erasmus opted to include four scrumhalves - De Klerk, Ivan van Zyl, Embrose Papier and Ross Cronje - in his 35-man Rugby Championship squad.
Cronje was not part of the team’s matches against Wales and England earlier in the year.
Meanwhile, it appears as though Le Roux will be managed carefully by the Boks in the Rugby Championship.
The 28-year-old is very much the first-choice No 15 after impressive performances in the June Tests against England, but Sport24 understands that Erasmus is keen on fielding 20-year-old Damian Willemse at fullback, with the coach encouraging Le Roux to mentor the Stormers youngster throughout the tournament.
The Boks kick off their Rugby Championship campaign next Saturday when they host Argentina in Durban (August 18).