Borthwick at the Bulls
Saracens lock Steve Borthwick is spending a week in Pretoria with the Bulls to observe their preparations for the new Super Rugby season.
The former England captain, who plans on a career in coaching after his playing days are over, is to spend the week monitoring training techniques and to learn from the "top quality" coaches at the Bulls.
"I was given the week off by Saracens and an opportunity came up to come here, and the Blue Bulls have very kindly allowed me to come and observe. To learn and see how I can improve," said Borthwick to SuperSport.
"I've been given the opportunity to observe every team that is training. Everybody has been very welcome here and very open so I'm hopefully I'm going to learn.
"The players have come over very well. Brad Barritt, who has gone on to play for England and the likes of Schalk Brits, Ernst Joubert and several others who have been excellent. So the links are strong, and clearly not on the playing front, but also on coaching with Brendan Venter there as well.
"While I am still a player right now, it is very important for me to continue my education as a coach, so that I can be in a strong position when I retire.
"I've been assisting with the Saracens academy and taking on whatever opportunities I can to learn. It's a great opportunity for me to take the time to watch top quality coaches at the Bulls and to learn from them.
"Right now I'm a player and I want to be the best player and leader for Saracens that I can be so that we can achieve what we aspire to. What is important, is when opportunities present themselves to learn and develop, to experience other things, is to take those things."
Borthwick also added that he feel England have a strong chance in next month's Six Nations Championship, based on a string of impressive performances.
"England have a great chance, not just because of the win over the All Blacks, which was exceptional, but how they played in the other games," added Borthwick.
"There was a lot of huge positives from an England point of view, and even on the tour last year, it was a great tour for England. As they get a lot more experience, there is a quality group of players who are spending a lot of time together and that's very positive for the future."