Sign-up for the latest, breaking news!


    Bulls youngsters to get a shot

    2014-07-01 14:31

    Johannesburg - The Vodacom Bulls are set to hand Super Rugby debuts to two young players this weekend when they head to Cape Town for their Vodacom Super Rugby match against the Stormers at Newlands.

    According to the website, both SA under-20 lock Nicolaas Janse van Rensburg and Tuks flank Roelof Smit are likely to be among the reserves as the Bulls look to patch up the cracks left by injuries after a long and arduos Super Rugby season.

    And there will be no rest for the weary. As predicted the Bulls will use all their Springboks for the game which they need to win with a bonus point to continue their mathematical hope of making the playoffs.

    While that hope remains and may be a long shot, the Bulls may want to consider the fact they still haven’t won an away game in this year’s competition, falling both overseas and in Durban, Bloemfontein and Johannesburg when they have played there.

    The traditional derby against the Stormers will lift them, but to go and get a bonus point win will be a massive ask, especially against a Stormers team which seems to have found form in the past few weeks before the June break.

    Still, the injuries to Flip van der Merwe and Jacques du Plessis will be covered pretty easily as Paul Willemse will slot in at lock in one of his last performances for the Bulls and Jacques Engelbrecht is set to move to blindside flank to fill in the gap left by Du Plessis.

    That will give the Bulls an option to play workmanlike Grant Hattingh at eight again, with Jono Ross reverting to six for the match.

    But against a Stormers team that is good at the breakdown they will have their work cut out for them, especially as it is unlikely they will start with the nuggety Bongi Mbonambi and rather go with Callie Visagie once more.

    Ironically while the injuries have given the Bulls an opportunity to blood some youngsters, they will have their hand almost forced by the Springbok call-ups.

    The fact that Heyneke Meyer gave both Marcel van der Merwe and Handre Pollard test caps before they commanded a starting spot in the Bulls line-up shows just how conservative the Bulls have been in selection and that is underlined when it comes to the uniquely talented SA under-20 utility back Jesse Kriel, who still fails to get a chance despite being one of the best players in the IRB Junior World Championship.

    Kriel is likely to have to wait until the Absa Currie Cup to get a run, and then he may still play second fiddle to Jurgen Visser in his favoured fullback spot, while he may have been playing Super Rugby already at other franchises.

    The Bulls have also changed their strict weekly programme to only name the side on Thursday, a strange deviation as they keep religiously to their programme normally, even on public holidays and famously this year scheduled their team announcement on the day of the elections, while the rest of the country was off voting.

    Read More On:  bulls super 15 rugby

    Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    Comments have been closed for this article.
    Live Video Streaming
    • Blitz
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
    • SS1
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
    • SS2
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
    • SS3
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk
    Most Read


    04 July 2015
    27 June 2015
    20 June 2015
    13 June 2015
    12 June 2015
    06 June 2015
    05 June 2015
    30 May 2015
    29 May 2015
    23 May 2015
    22 May 2015
    16 May 2015
    15 May 2015
    09 May 2015
    08 May 2015
    02 May 2015
    01 May 2015
    26 April 2015
    25 April 2015
    24 April 2015
    18 April 2015
    17 April 2015
    11 April 2015
    10 April 2015
    04 April 2015
    03 April 2015
    28 March 2015
    27 March 2015
    22 March 2015
    21 March 2015
    20 March 2015
    14 March 2015
    13 March 2015
    07 March 2015
    06 March 2015
    28 February 2015
    27 February 2015
    21 February 2015
    20 February 2015
    15 February 2015
    14 February 2015
    13 February 2015


    “Craig Joubert deserves plaudits for making a gutsy call against the home side in the Super Rugby semis, writes Herman Mostert.”

    Opinion Poll

    Super Rugby is a thing of the past. Next up: The Rugby Championship. Who will emerge victorious this season?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.