Currie Cup

Mitchell: Bulls face biggest challenge of season

2017-09-22 14:22
John Mitchell (Gallo)

Cape Town - Executive of rugby John Mitchell says the Blue Bulls' Currie Cup clash against the Sharks in Durban will be their toughest of the season.

The Bulls head to Kings Park as underdogs, having won just three of eight matches to sit second from last on the overall standings.

In contrast, their hosts the Sharks are soaring at the top of the table with eight wins from nine matches.

“We are no doubt facing our biggest challenge of the season,” Mitchell told the Bulls’ official website.

“The Sharks have been in awesome form this year and to have to travel down to Durban to face them is not making it any easier. That said, this group is all about challenges and how we confront and handle them, so we are looking forward to the clash.”

Mitchell was keen to see his team improve following a narrow 36-33 defeat against the Golden Lions in Johannesburg.

“We are slowly starting to come to grips with a number of structural changes and for once, there is some continuity available in selection, something that was not possible earlier in the competition,” Mitchell said after making only two changes to his starting team.

Blue Bulls captain Burger Odendaal also commented: “We are working hard to adapt to a number of things and there was a positive approach to the work put in this week, so we now need to go down to Durban and show the improvements.”

Kick-off for Saturday's clash is scheduled for 15:00.

Teams:

Sharks

15 Garth April, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Jeremy Ward, 12 Marius Louw, 11 Sbu Nkosi, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Michael Claassens, 8 Dan du Preez, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Keegan Daniel, 5 Ruan Botha (captain), 4 Tyler Paul, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Thomas du Toit

Substitutes: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Jean Droste, 19 Tera Mtembu, 20 Cameron Wright, 21 Tristan Blewett, 22 Rhyno Smith

Blue Bulls

15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Duncan Matthews, 13 Burger Odendaal (captain), 12 JT Jackson, 11 Johnny Kotze, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Jano Venter, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Nic de Jager, 5 Aston Fortuin, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Conraad van Vuuren, 2 Edgar Marutlulle, 1 Pierre Schoeman

Substitutes: 16 Johan Grobbelaar, 17 Matthys Basson, 18 Tim Agaba, 19 Marco van Staden, 20 Piet van Zyl, 21 Handre Pollard, 22 Ulrich Beyers

Read more on:    sharks  |  blue bulls  |  currie cup  |  john mitchell  |  pretoria  |  durban  |  rugby
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