Is reshuffling on the cards at the Bulls?

    2017-04-30 06:06
    IN THE PICTURE: Pote Human has been tipped to join the Vodacom Bulls as forwards coach. (Lee Warren, Gallo Images)

    Simnikiwe Xabanisa

    Johannesburg - The Bulls have denied that they are reshuffling to shore up their Super Rugby coaching staff after less than satisfactory results in this year’s tournament.

    So far the Bulls, who were on a bye this weekend, have won just three of their eight games.

    This has been a massive setback in a rugby season which saw them start off with high expectations.

    Backline coach

    The three-time Super Rugby champions have appeared to fall between two schools of thought when playing: staying true to the old values which got them the three titles and adopting a ball-in-hand approach.

    An insider, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said changes were afoot to beef up a young coaching team, with SuperSport Rugby Challenge coach Pote Human coming in as forwards coach, while the rugby union would go looking for a backline coach.

    The casualties of the move are supposed to be former Bulls captain Anton Leonard and former Bulls full back David Manuel, who would step down to the Rugby Challenge team.

    But Bulls chief executive Barend van Graan denied that the changes would come into ­effect, even though two officials from the union understand that to be the case.

    “The Blue Bulls company is in continuous discussion with the Vodacom Bulls head coach, Nollis Marais, to get the desired performance from the Bulls, keeping in mind the minimum disrupting (sic) of the team and team management,” Van Graan said via WhatsApp.

    “There are no changes to the management team, but all options to improve the performance of the Bulls will be considered in consultation with the coach.

    “We are not going to respond to speculation and will make an announcement if necessary”.

    Informal discussion

    According to our source, Human, who was in Namibia on Saturday with the Blue Bulls side to play the Welwitschias in the Rugby Challenge competition, is supposed to join the senior Bulls side this week, while the search for the backline coach is wide open.

    Former Free State captain and eighth man Human has had some success as Bulls head coach, after winning the shared Currie Cup title in 2006 with the Cheetahs, when Heyneke Meyer took a break from coaching after Super Rugby.

    Asked if there was any truth to speculation that the Bulls had reached out to former All Blacks coach Wayne Smith recently, Van Graan downgraded the status of the chat with this terse reply:

    “The Bulls’ head coach and members of his management team had an informal discussion on coaching matters with Wayne Smith during the team’s visit to New Zealand.”

    What To Read Next

    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
    Add your comment
    Comment 0 characters remaining
    Live Video Streaming
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk


    05 August 2017
    29 July 2017
    22 July 2017
    21 July 2017
    15 July 2017
    14 July 2017
    08 July 2017
    07 July 2017
    01 July 2017
    30 June 2017
    09 June 2017
    03 June 2017
    02 June 2017
    28 May 2017
    27 May 2017
    26 May 2017
    21 May 2017
    20 May 2017
    19 May 2017
    13 May 2017
    12 May 2017
    06 May 2017
    05 May 2017
    30 April 2017
    29 April 2017
    28 April 2017
    22 April 2017
    21 April 2017
    15 April 2017
    14 April 2017
    09 April 2017
    08 April 2017
    07 April 2017
    02 April 2017
    01 April 2017
    31 March 2017
    25 March 2017
    24 March 2017
    18 March 2017
    17 March 2017
    11 March 2017
    10 March 2017
    04 March 2017
    03 March 2017
    02 March 2017
    25 February 2017
    24 February 2017
    23 February 2017


    Rank Team P W Pts

    Opinion Poll

    The 2017 Super Rugby tournament has reached its quarter-final stage. When all is said and done, who emerges victorious?

    The ultimate Super Rugby quiz!

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