Bulls look to bounce back

2012-01-18 14:33

Pretoria - Bulls coach Frans Ludeke says his side aims to be bigger, stronger and faster going into this year's Super Rugby season.

Ludeke said on Wednesday that the first phase of getting his squad back to winning ways had been a resounding success.

"We are really satisfied with our pre-season preparations and definitely achieved the goals we set ourselves," Ludeke said.

They had put extra emphasis, he added, on conditioning training during the off-season break and would now shift their attention to rugby matters.

"There was a rugby component but the core of our pre-season training was conditioning - bigger, stronger and faster," Ludeke said.

"We worked on the type of work ethic for the players to get back to their feet and back into play."

The focus on conditioning, Ludeke said, was to ensure that the players were fit enough to last an entire match.

"We believe conditioning should make us a team that will be competitive for 80 minutes.

"That is what it is all about. Fitness is the foundation everything revolves around."

He said it was the first time in four years the Bulls had a full squad at their disposal, compared to other seasons when a large contingent of their players were involved in the Springboks' end-of-year tours.

The Bulls viewed this as an opportunity to get all the players on the same fitness level.

Ludeke said the franchise needed some introspection after last year's poor performance.

They have lifted the Super Rugby title three times in the last five years, but failed to reach the playoffs in the 2011 competition.

"We definitely highlighted that we needed to find a way forward," he said.

"Last year we saw that we did not have enough possession in our games and specifically the right type of possession."

The squad had made some adjustments to their game plan, according to the coach, and they were excited about what they had in mind.

The Bulls will play their first warm-up match against the Kings in Port Elizabeth on February 4 and their second against the Cheetahs on February 11 in Polokwane.

They start their Super Rugby campaign against the Sharks on February 24 in Pretoria.

Ludeke said they had no new injury concerns other than the recent news that Bulls vice-captain Wynand Olivier suffered a slight setback in his comeback from injury when he broke a small bone in his wrist.


  • Koos - 2012-01-18 14:46

    Gee hulle horings Bulle!!!!

      Selma - 2012-01-18 17:04

      Stadig oor die klippe. Die Bulle is besig om span te bou. Ek hoop die Leeus kan voortbou op hul Curriebeker prestasie dat ter wille van SA Rugby en hul ondersteuners die Sharks hul plig nakom. Die WP sal bly struikel tot en met die voorry uitgesorteer word en die Vrystaat sal moedig probeer, n paar spanne die skrik op die lyf jaag, en in die onderste helfte eindig. Die All Black spelers gaan probeer vergoed vir die patetiese vertoning van die WB eindstryd en alles uithaal. Dit gaan n kwaai seisoen wees en ons gaan klippe kou. Voorspoed Spies - hopelik herwin jy jou vorm.

      Francois - 2012-01-19 06:43

      I can't recall the Bulls winning anything recently so I don't know exactly where Ludeke comes up with "getting back to winning ways was a resounding success". Maybe they won against the gim machines. Selma, are you perhaps insinuating Spies is out of form? The whole rugby community except Virgin Active, Snorre and Pretoria knew that.

  • anthonyangiev - 2012-01-18 14:47

    GOOD LUCK BOYS! I will be rooting for ya'll!

  • Blou-Daan - 2012-01-18 15:26

    Janee, die afrigter wat hier ter sprake is het nou al so twee Super bekers agter sy naam. Man, ek sien n goeie seisoen vir die Bulle wat voorle. Kan nie wag dat die seisoen begin nie :-)

      Francois - 2012-01-19 16:56

      Net 1 - twee jaar terug - die voriges was Heyneke Meyer die afrigter. Ons was almal dat dit seisoen begin - hopelik kry 'n span soos die Crusaders die Bulle op Loftus en dan die Leeus op Ellispark en gaan huis toe met 10 log punte vir SA spanne en hulle 30 punte af.

  • Brannas - 2012-01-18 15:35

    Die jaar gaan die bulle warm wees, arme stormers moet tevrede wees met parrabekkie AC as coach, Crash Dummy palooka Schalk as Kaptein en parkbankie Bekker as hulle ace forward en buk en bekruip JDV as plan maker, shame ek voel vir die drolle. Die Bulle het Hougard, Spies, Olivier en Sadie etc. Niks sal die Bulle die jaar keer nie.

      Bulldozer - 2012-01-18 15:54

      Brannas, jou naamlys kan aangaan en aangaan en aangaan en en en en en.......................

      Koos - 2012-01-18 16:17

      Hahaha Parkbankie Bekker, goeie een!!!!

  • Saffa - 2012-01-18 15:54

    What happened to the small bone in Meisie's wrist? Hairbrush tantrum? I for one CAN'T WAIT to see the Bulls in action this season.......hehehehehehehe. Captain "courageous" who's appointment is outrageous, Spies rallying the troops when they are trailing by 30. How does one who takes no physical contact and can't read a game inspire others to do so? I am as excited as what the Blue trolls are to see this.....

      Blou-Daan - 2012-01-18 16:00

      @Saffa Are you a Stormer supporter? Because I can hear the ecco of a Cape looser in the background :-)

      Saffa - 2012-01-18 16:11

      A looser? Is that someone with loose morals Blou-daan? Or someone wearing loose fitting clothing? Only kidding Bulls gnome. Of course I support the Stormers (as do most who do not need a rugby team to bolster their egos.) I.e.: My team losing does not make me a LOSER; in the same way your team winning certainly does not make you a WINNER :) I can take no credit for my teams 'losses'. Can you take credit for your teams victories? I am a Stormer dude - til death us do part.

      Saffa - 2012-01-18 16:39

      I was going to go and sob in the corner when I saw all of those nasty 'thumbs down', but then I was reminded that the thumbs down are coming from Bulls fans....and no person of substance really gives a toss what they think, so I won't be sobbing in the hoekie, but going for cocktails instead. Toodles.

      Bames - 2012-01-18 16:56

      Saffa, "do not need a rugby team to bolster their ego"? You obviously had a hard and long think about it during the off season, new approach for 2012? You certainly came the closest to being a "my life revolves around the Stormers" girl last year, preaching how deeply ingrained the WP culture is in the team AND their supporters... is that the losers you referring to? Really thought last years embarresment and 12 years continued under performance would have tought you something. Obviously the laid back Capies are slow learners.

  • steven.chiaberta - 2012-01-18 16:49

    I think the Lions and Stormers will do well this year. Probably the Sharks as well. But the Cheetahs will have their usual lack of depth problems (maybe Lions too, I guess) thanks to other unions stealing most of their best players, and the Bulls will need a year or two to get the new team achieving again. But sorry Bulle, Spies is only good when his team goes forward, otherwise he vanishes. He's proven that for years, so give me Alberts, Vermeulen or Josh Strauss any day of the week. Olivier would be better if he passed the ball more. And if you guys stick to kicking and chasing as usual, I'm pretty sure you're gonna finish in the bottom 3 this year.

  • clivegoss - 2012-01-18 17:34

    Hou die BLOU ! !

  • Dawie - 2012-01-18 18:22

    Can someone explain to the idiots that bouncing means going upwards and downwards constantly - First down (normally three years - 2010/2011/2012) and then upwards (still to be see once teambuilding is done !!!) - the downwards normally goes much quicker than the upwards - difficult to understand or what ????

  • Thomas - 2012-01-18 21:26

    I think they are going to do well this year even though they are starting from scratch, their good structures and planners will mould a solid team!!!

  • Jock - 2012-01-18 21:37

    If only he'd said 'cleverer' or 'smarter' !!

  • Marius - 2012-01-18 21:49

    Ek woon in New Zealand. Ek het vanoggend Ali Williams, Richie MCcaw en Jimmy Cowan in die gym hier in Auckland gekry. Richie se hulle het n baie harde Pre-Season gehad en hulle is "super ready". Hulle al drie is in super form en ek dink dit gaan n baie goeie season wees ..........................

  • russellandrewcash - 2012-01-19 07:42

    Well if you continue to coach a kick ,chase & hope game how do expect to keep possession!!!!!

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