Sharks coach John Plumtree has revealed the former Springbok Butch James has been ruled out of his team's Super Rugby opener against the Cheetahs.
Plumtree said that James could be back in action in two weeks time which could see him playing against the Stormers in Durban on March the 2nd.
"Butch had a scope done on his knee two weeks ago to remove loose bodies," Plumtree said on the Sharks site.
"It's not serious and he is expected to be ready in a fortnight."
The Sharks beat the Leopards 71-8 in Pietermaritzburg last Friday and assistant coach Grant Bashford says that they are hoping the Pumas give them a stiffer challenge on Friday.
"The downside of that match was the injuries we sustained and we were hoping for a tougher hit-out than we had," said Bashford.
"But the positive was scoring 11 tries and we got some of our structures going which we had wanted to do in this game.
"Defensively we were pretty good as well, so the game served its purpose."
Bashford added that from the perspective of both attack and defence, "we're pretty happy although there are always bits to tidy up on. "
"We had 18 turnovers and probably could have scored another four or five tries had we been a bit more clinical up the field. "
"But for a first hit-out, there were always going to be mistakes, we were a bit disappointed in the way we received our kick-offs, we made mistakes in our own 22 as well so those are areas of our game we will look to sharpen up before we get to the Cheetahs'' game."
"The Leopards had key players that weren't available to them, I believe many of their players were involved in the Varsity Cup tournament so they were depleted from a personnel perspective, but the Pumas away should be a different kettle of fish, they have a tough pack and hopefully it will be a harder hit-out."