Springbok and Stormers flanker Schalk Burger has revealed that he hopes to decide over the next couple of months whether or not he will return to rugby.
Stormers captain Burger has not played rugby since he was injured playing in the opening round of Super Rugby in 2012.
"You get to the point where your health is more important and rugby is not a consideration, but now that I'm recovering well I want to play rugby again," Burger told The Times.
"I'll have to be cautious. I won't over-commit, but after my next check-up in seven weeks, I'll take another decision about my future.
"I won't say my return to rugby is definite, but that's what I'm striving towards," said Burger.
The Stormers flank contracted bacterial meningitis after he underwent surgery in March on a nerve in his back.
"There was a critical stage for about four, nearly five days in which there was a lot of uncertainty," he said.
"In that period I was in isolation and I was seriously ill - so ill, in fact, that some people around me thought, 'this is it'."
Burger said he had spent six weeks in hospital and another eight at home "doing very little".