Ludeke on why Matfield rests
Cape Town - Bulls coach Frans Ludeke
has explained his decision not to pick lock Victor Matfield
for their Super Rugby clash against the Lions.
Matfield was not included in the Bulls' 23-man squad for the cross-Jukskei derby at Ellis Park this Saturday after starting in their last six matches.
Ludeke, in an interview with the Rugby365 website
, said the decision was based on their policy to "manage" the 110-Test capped Springbok, who returned to the game this year after a two-year hiatus.
The Bulls' initial plan was to rest Matfield for their entire Australasian tour. However, injuries and a three-game suspension for captain Flip van der Merwe meant Matfield ended up playing three of the four games on tour.
Matfield also played in their last three home games - victories over the Cheetahs, Stormers and Brumbies - something the coach said was important as they needed to get their campaign back on track after losing all four games on tour.
Before the season had even started, the Bulls had extensive talks with the player as well as Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer
and it was decided to carefully manage Matfield during the season.
Ludeke felt this week was the perfect time to rest Matfield, also taking into consideration that he is likely to feature for the Boks in their upcoming internationals in June.
The Boks start their year with a game against the World XV at Newlands on June 7, followed by two Tests against Wales (Durban, June 14 and Nelspruit, June 21) and one against Scotland (Port Elizabeth, June 28).
Saturday's clash at Ellis Park kicks off at 17:05.Teams:Lions:
15. Coenie van Wyk, 14. Courtnall Skosan, 13. Stokkies Hanekom, 12. Alwyn Hollenbach, 11. Chrysander Botha, 10. Marnitz Boshoff, 9. Ross Cronjé, 8. Warren Whiteley (captain), 7. Warwick Tecklenburg, 6. Jaco Kriel, 5. Franco Mostert, 4. Rudi Mathee, 3. Julian Redelinghuys, 2. Robbie Coetzee, 1. Schalk van der Merwe
Substitutes: 16. Armand van der Merwe, 17. Corné Fourie, 18. Ruan Dreyer, 19. Willie Britz, 20. Derick Minnie, 21. Faf de Klerk, 22. Elton Jantjies
, 23. Deon van RensburgBulls:
15 Jurgen Visser
, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 JJ Engelbrecht
, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Bjorn Basson
, 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9 Francois Hougaard
, 8 Jacques Engelbrecht, 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Jono Ross
, 5 Grant Hattingh
, 4 Flip van der Merwe (captain), 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Callie Visagie
, 1 Dean Greyling
Substitutes: 16 Bongi Mbonambi
, 17 Werner Kruger
, 18 Morné Mellett, 19 Paul Willemse
, 20 Wimpie van der Walt, 21 Piet van Zyl, 22 Louis Fouché, 23 William-Small Smith