Vodacom Super Rugby
Brenden Nel - SuperSport
Bulls receive timely boost
The Vodacom Bulls were given a boost on Monday when they received a clean bill of health and their Springbok fullback Zane Kirchner back for their four week tour of the Antipodes.
Kirchner missed the 30-23 win over the Lions with a shoulder injury, but was cleared by Bulls doctor Org Strauss for further action on Monday, along with a host of players nursing bumps and bruises.
There were also clean bills of health for those who sustained knocks in that victory - including Jaco Pretorius (neck), captain Victor Matfield (blow to the head), Bakkies Botha (knee) and Flip van der Merwe (ankle). While some players rested yesterday, they should be ready to face the Hurricanes in Napier on Saturday.
The Bulls also announced their tour squad for the four week trip, where they will leave only on Tuesday night, arriving at midnight on Wednesday in Wellington ahead of their match. The same late arrival worked for them last year as they beat the Hurricanes in their opening tour match as well.
Kirchner, midfielder Stephan Dippenaar, winger Akona Ndungane and prop Morne Mellett were added to the match 22 that faced the Lions this past weekend for the tour. Mellett is the only uncapped player in the group and will make his debut if he takes the field.
The touring squad is:
Zane Kirchner, Jaco van der Westhuyzen, Gerhard van den Heever, Bjorn Basson, Akona Ndungane, Stephan Dippenaar, Jaco Pretorius, Wynand Olivier, Morné Steyn, Francois Brummer, Fourie du Preez, Francois Hougaard, Pierre Spies, Dewald Potgieter, Derick Kuün, Deon Stegmann, Victor Matfield, Danie Rossouw, Bakkies Botha, Flip van der Merwe, Werner Kruger, Rossouw de Klerk, Gary Botha, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Dean Greyling, Morné Mellett.