Western Force coach Michael Foley is quietly confident in-form first-five Sias Ebersohn will re-sign with the Perth-based franchise.
Ebersohn is in hot demand following his strong start to the Super Rugby season, with his former side the Cheetahs keen to lure him back to Bloemfontein.
The 25-year-old South African is in his second year at the Force, and will become eligible to play for the Wallabies after one more season if he extends his stay in Australia.
It's understood Ebersohn is happy in Perth and wants to stay put.
"Those negotiations are taking place," Force coach Michael Foley said ahead of Saturday night's clash with the Stormers in Cape Town.
"We're very keen to keep Sias, and we'll be doing everything we can to do that.
"And I think he's pretty keen to stay, which is great."
Ebersohn has been a key figure in the Force's rise up the ranks this season, and Foley was full of praise for the classy playmaker.
"He's got a lovely balance to his game. He can play run, pass or kick," Foley said.
"The decisions he's making on the field at the moment are very good.
"He's relieving pressure on us and creating pressure on the opposition. That goes a hell of a long way to us getting the results that we have done."
The Force were dealt a double injury blow this week when in-form centre Kyle Godwin (knee) and winger Dane Haylett-Petty (groin) were ruled out.
Godwin will be replaced by 20-year-old debutant Luke Burton, while former rugby league player Chris Tuatara-Morrison will start at outside centre.
The Force started the round in fifth place, and will notch a franchise-record eighth win of the season if they can get over the top of the last-placed Stormers.
However, Foley warned his charges not to rest on their laurels, saying the Stormers were a proud team who will be desperate to turn around their flagging season.
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