Vodacom Super Rugby
Bulls underestimating SBW?
Sonny Bill Williams (File)
Pretoria - There's still aftershocks in Christchurch with two light vibrations shaking the battered city on Monday, but even the locals will be surprised and shocked to hear that the Bulls don't regard Sonny Bill Williams as their biggest threat in the city.
In fact, Bulls forwards coach Johann van Graan says the new centre sensation is low on the Bulls’ priority list, as they prepare in ice cold Queenstown.
“Sonny Bill is just one of many threats. The Crusaders have strengths in every department and we won’t just focus on Sonny Bill. He is just one in a team full of good players.”
The strongly-built Williams ripped the Sharks’ midfield to shreds two weeks ago with exceptional handling and running lines. He and centre partner Robbie Fruan will be up against Wynand Olivier and Jaco Pretorius, who gained the upper hand over the Hurricanes combination of Ma’a Nonu and Conrad Smith at the weekend.
“It’s a dangerous combination, especially if you consider that there is an All Black halfback pairing on their inside,” said Van Graan.
There is uncertainty over the fitness of Dan Carter after he injured a hamstring against the Sharks, but the chances are good that he will play.
“The Crusaders have talent in every position and are in a class of their own as a counter-attacking side. I reckon they are the best attacking team in the competition, so our defence will have to be very good,” said Van Graan.
However, the Bulls don't fear their opponents.
“We have played them a lot the past few years. After all, they were our opponents in the last four semifinals that we played. We won three of the four, so we know we can beat them. We want to play our game against them,” said Van Graan.