Johannesburg - Retired Springbok player Victor Matfield, once touted as the world's best lock, has been appointed as a coach at his former team, the Bulls. The club made the announcement on Tuesday.

The 35-year-old will be the forwards and attack coach for the 2013 season after he worked for the team in a consulting role this year.

“I am excited to work with the coaches in their new roles and believe we have the right mix of personalities, skills and expertise to make 2013 a success,” said Bulls coach Frans Ludeke.

“Someone like Victor has so much experience to give back to our players and I am very excited to work with one of the sharpest rugby minds in the business.”

Once Springboks captain, Matfield retired after South Africa crashed out of the 2011 Rugby World Cup in the last eight.

In 2012, he divided his time between consulting for the Bulls and game analysis at Johannesburg-based sports broadcaster SuperSport.

New national coach Heyneke Meyer, the former Bulls coach, failed to lure Matfield from retirement for England's three-Test tour to South Africa in June.

Ironically Matfield's appointment comes amid a string of changes in the Bulls camp to replace coaches who have left to join Meyer with the Springboks.

Former national flyhalf Derrick Hougaard joins the side as junior kicking and skills consultant.

Sprinbok centre Wynand Olivier will, meanwhile, return to the Bulls for the next season after he joined Japanese club Ricoh Black Rams in July this year. - Sapa-AFP