Currie Cup

Mitchell: Currie Cup important for Super Rugby

2017-07-20 14:29
John Mitchell (Gallo Images)

Pretoria - The John Mitchell era is underway at Loftus Versfeld as the Bulls look to return to their former glory days. 

While Super Rugby 2017 was an absolute nightmare, there is little time to wallow with attention immediately turning to this year's edition of the Currie Cup and a tournament opener against Griquas on Saturday. 

Mitchell, the Rugby Executive at the Bulls, will also serve as attack coach for the Currie Cup side while Nollis Marais will be head coach, forwards coach and attacking breakdown coach. 

It is an opportunity for Marais to prove that he still has a role to play at the Union after he failed to impress at Super Rugby level, while Mitchell is already looking ahead to Super Rugby 2018.

"It's about getting our confidence back and playing well and playing winning rugby," Mitchell said at the Blue Bulls team announcement of Thursday.

"In the long-term, we have a responsibility for player development and depth heading into next year's Super Rugby pre-season."

Mitchell only started in his new role this week, but he says he has found the players prepared to change. 

"The players' attitudes have been wonderful and there is excellent energy. I've been able to offer a few little tweaks and a few new ideas here and there and the guys have been open to change," he said.

"You can't do everything overnight. It's not about changing everything. It's about updating our way and a lot of it has to do with mindset.

"I think it comes down to how we go about our work and having an obsession with what we do. It's about making sure our identity is always taken care of and that what we value we stick to."

Kick-off on Saturday is at 19:30.

Teams:

Griquas

15 Adriaan Coertzen (captain), 14 Ederies Arendse, 13 Tertius Kruger, 12 Clinton Swart, 11 Koch Marx, 10 Andre Swarts, 9 Christiaan Meyer, 8 Jonathan Janse van Rensburg, 7 Sias Koen, 6 RJ Liebenberg, 5 Floris Pelser, 4 Mzwanele Zito, 3 Ewald van der Westhuizen, 2 Abraham le Roux, 1 Liam Hendricks

Substitutes: 16 Marius Fourie, 17 Nicolaas Oosthuizen, 18 Jonathan Adendorf, 19 Wendal Wehr, 20 Rudi Van Rooyen, 21 George Whitehead, 22 Enver Brandt

Blue Bulls

15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Franco Naude, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Duncan Matthews, 10 Tony Jantjies, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Nic de Jager, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Boom Prinsloo (captain), 5 Abongile Nonkontwana, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Conraad van Vuuren, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman

Substitutes: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 John-Roy Jenkinson, 18 Freddy Ngoza, 19 Shaun Adendorff, 20 Andre Warner, 21 Tinus de Beer, 22 JT Jackson

Read more on:    blue bulls  |  currie cup  |  john mitchell  |  pretoria  |  rugby
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Fixtures
Sunday, 20 August 2017
Griquas v Pumas, Kimberley 14:30
Friday, 25 August 2017
Pumas v Blue Bulls, Nelspruit 19:00
Saturday, 26 August 2017
Western Province v Sharks, Cape Town 15:00
Free State Cheetahs v Golden Lions, Bloemfontein 17:15
Friday, 01 September 2017
Blue Bulls v Griquas, Pretoria 19:00
Saturday, 02 September 2017
Golden Lions v Pumas, Johannesburg 15:00
Sharks v Free State Cheetahs, Durban 17:15
Friday, 08 September 2017
Pumas v Sharks, Nelspruit 17:00
Griquas v Golden Lions, Kimberley 19:15
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