Bulls to field 'dream' midfield

2013-01-28 15:40

Pretoria - The Bulls could unleash a new dream midfield pairing ahead of their Gauteng Challenge game against the Lions in Soweto on Saturday as they begin their preparations for the Super Rugby season ahead.

According to the website, while the Bulls were buoyed by the return of veteran Wynand Olivier from Japan on Monday, the blonde midfielder will rejoin his team-mates from Tuesday, but will not be considered for this weekend’s match, even though it is reported he is injury free and raring to play.

It was initially feared that Olivier may miss the start of the season with his Japanese team’s progress in their domestic competition, but this hasn’t been the case and Olivier returned home to South Africa on the weekend.

With Francois Venter also ruled out of action with a groin injury and not considered this week for selection, the Bulls are likely to play their import Lionel Mapoe at outside centre, while the inside centre position is likely to fall to IRB Junior Player of the year for 2012, Jan Serfontein.

The duo are expected to be a major part of the Bulls plans for the season and it will be interesting to see how they gel, as both are known as influential attackers in the backline with Bok futures ahead of them.

While the coaching staff are likely to mix and match their selection for this game, giving opportunities to young players in a mix of youth and experience, there have been some players ruled out through injury.

With lock Wilhelm Steenkamp (shoulder), prop Marcel van der Merwe (knee) and prop Dean Greyling (stress fracture, foot) already ruled out through pre-season injuries, the list got a bit longer as team doctor Org Strauss confirmed that Boks Zane Kirchner and Werner Kruger are also not being considered for this weekend’s game.

Kirchner and Kruger both have back strains, while import hooker Callie Visagie is also out with a hamstring. All three should be ready for next weekend’s match against the Cheetahs in Polokwane.

Currie Cup captain Dewald Potgieter will rejoin training on Tuesday while fellow loose forward Jean Cooke will undergo a fitness test on Wednesday. But on the positive side, flyhalf Louis Fouche, utility back Ulrich Beyers, winger Akona Ndungane and flank/lock Grant Hattingh are all over their niggles and can be considered for selection.

The SA Under-20s have also rejoined the team and will be considered for action, with IRB Junior Rugby World Championship winning captain Wian Liebenberg resuming training on Tuesday after a hamstring strain.

HAVE YOUR SAY: Will the Bulls be the Lions' next victims? How will the Bulls fare in this year's Super Rugby tournament? Send your thoughts to Sport24.


  • ReneMuller.XOXO - 2013-01-28 15:47

    Watching re-runs of old games on ESPN - having serious withdrawal symptoms! C'mon, can the season start already!?!?

      gary.doyle.520 - 2013-01-28 16:14

      Heineken cup, French top 14 and the English Premiership are all great but nothing compares to Super 15. I agree, can't wait for it to start.

      donder.wolk.7 - 2013-01-28 21:30

      The only dream midfield issi Stormers sn! Nogals!

      francois.jordaan.9 - 2013-01-29 15:07

      @Rene i do not know how someone can disagree with your comment. Talking about those 3 lonely souls disliking your comment. It's almost time for some serious rugby

  • mario.roodt - 2013-01-28 15:48

    A midfield can only be effective when the forwards supply quality ball. Seems like half the starting pack of forwards are already sidelined. With no ball to run with I hope this "dream midfield" can stand their man come defence time.

      Hanjo - 2013-01-28 19:59

      I rate both Mapoe and Jan, I assume the bulls have given up on the experiment of JJ at centre? When Wynand is back, I would rather have him play outside centre with either Venter or Serfontein starting in the 12 jersey. - might sound crazy but you need an inside centre who's willing to play unselfish rugby.

      TravieGrif - 2013-01-29 06:26

      With players like Mapoe and Serfontein, why would you consider Olivier for anything more than the role of assistant boot-shiner? Those are some talented players right there!

  • chumani.ngcokovane - 2013-01-28 15:52

    Dream midfield? ahahaha that has not existed at loftus in their entire history. Grabbing used goods from other teams (Mapoe) won't get you anywhere. You gta groom em bud

      stirrer.stirrer - 2013-01-28 16:04

      A nightmare is also a dream.

      stompies.hattingh.5 - 2013-01-28 18:29

      Were you born last year!

      lesbeen - 2013-01-28 20:14

      Like province did with Jacque Fourie, Taute, Bobo, Heinrich Fuls, Christian Stewart etc?

      david.boswel - 2013-01-28 20:51

      Well it has gotten us a string of curry cups and three super cups, so do your homework before making idiotic comments

      craven.luyt - 2013-01-28 20:57

      Chumani, like Elton Jantjies and Jaco Taute? Your surname is very similar to a dish in which you cook chicken in red wine, do you have French roots?

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 04:47

      stirrer, and they have been dreaming for a while now.

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-29 17:15

      Christina, julle droom baie langer al

  • - 2013-01-28 15:54

    Dream on! Kaap groete.

      tertius.devereaux.1 - 2013-01-28 17:19

      Kaap se g*t

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 04:48

      Miskien tertjie, maar die Bulls gaan hulle g@t sien. Soos die afgelope paar jaar.

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-29 13:53

      drie koppies christina, drie koppies

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 22:40

      Tienkie-winkie. Wys my daai koppies. Die enigste koppie in Moftus se trofeekas is Wynie se vuil koffie koppie.

  • nico.pretorius.946 - 2013-01-28 15:55

    Mapoe is going to be a problem for us, we taught him TOO well!! hahahaha. Just hope our midfield can contain him :) should be a good match. GO LIONS!!!

      koos.tonteldoos.1 - 2013-01-28 23:06

      Mapoe learned what he know's now from the free state. Now its time for the Bulls to try and make a rugby player out of him.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 04:49

      koos, and how are the Bulls going to do that, if they themselves don't know how to play rugby?

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-29 17:16

      3 super koppies christina, 3 koppies

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 23:00

      Tienkie-winkie, ek verstaan jy leer nog om te copy en paste, so jy het oefening nodig, plus jy het net een se-ding. Ek het nie meer die oefening nodig nie, kan dit al toe-oe doen. So scroll boontoe om my reply op jou stupid aanmerking te lees. Het jy al geleer om boontoe te scroll? Of was les een nog net copy en paste?

  • upumba - 2013-01-28 15:59

    Zane Kirchner can sit out the entire year and it wouldnt make the bulls any weaker. Although, it will significantly strengthen the Boks

      craven.luyt - 2013-01-28 21:02

      Upumba, are you blind or insane? I would trust David Campese's rugby opinion over yours.Campo rates him so highly I think he might have a crush on him ( can't really him for that, now can you?)

      craven.luyt - 2013-01-28 21:19


      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 04:51

      And how many teams have Campo sucessfully coached? He's just saying that to make Heineken carry on selecting Niks-naks. That along with the selection of the Wallaby's star player, Hougaard, will give his Wallaby team a much higher probability of beating the Boks.

      Kykweer - 2013-01-29 09:04

      2012 super rugby STATS: 3rd. Most turnovers (38) 11th line break assists (5) 1st Try assists (9) 15th Most tries (6) Zane kirchner overall had a great season.

  • john.comyn.18 - 2013-01-28 16:14

    "DREAM MIDFIELD" !!! who wrote this article ... Lionel Mapoe?

      upumba - 2013-01-28 16:37

      hahahahaha - good question. If you wanna see a dream midfiled look the east coast - no not the kings, the Sharks F Steyn, T Whitehead, P Jordaan - add JP to that and we have a Bok midfield #JustSaying - 2013-01-28 21:55

      Brenda I wanna be a Bull Nell

  • mario.roodt - 2013-01-28 17:25

    Here's the dream backline... 10... Grant / Jantjies 11... Habana / Aplon 12... De Villiers / Grant 13... De Jongh / Taute 14... Aplon / Van den Heever 15... Taute / Pietersen Any of those combinations would make a Super Rugby coach smile.

      julius.malememba.7 - 2013-01-28 18:21

      Grant??????? Shame man - you must be the one having a nightmare!!!! That numbskull who was so excellent at getting your bok-backline to score so many tries last season??? Has-been Habana en kan-nie-pass-nie de Villiers se beste dae is LAAAAAANKAAAAL VERBY en Aplon en vd Heever en de Jongh gaan baie seer kry die seisoen .... Julle beste hoop vir 4 driee is teen die EP Queers.

      praben.manuel - 2013-01-28 19:20

      Now that's a backline that reached the dream status in rugby. Ps: u missed de allende

      craven.luyt - 2013-01-28 21:04

      Make the opposition coach smile, all those downies standing in a row.

      craven.luyt - 2013-01-28 21:09

      Praben, what does a backline have to do to achieve dream status? I would assume that would involve actually winning the competition? Your comment is senseless.

      eugene.brink.9 - 2013-01-29 07:37

      Haha, if those are your only options, I'd start to worry. Most of them should already be retired and the rest are borrowed from the Bulls and Lions.

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-29 13:13

      jinne daai karavaan ou is maar kommin drek, tipies wp supporter

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 00:38

      Jislaaik, ou Tienkie-winkie het al 4 keer kommentaar gelewer en nog niks bygedra nie. Ook maar lekker dof. Lyk my daar is nog steeds 'n totale intelektuele vakuum agter die mullet-gordyn.

  • - 2013-01-28 19:33

    I suppose a nightmare can be considered a dream.

  • chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-29 07:04

    Meisiekind can't even make the Bulls team. They have now also realised he is not Super Rugby quality.

  • Richard Gouws - 2013-01-29 08:57

    Jst a matter of time and the Mighty Bulls are back, bt can i say tht of your pathetic chocker slam stormertjies? No, dnt thnk so!!! Who's gonna be your Next De Villiers, habanna, Grant, Duvenage, Bekker, Gio Aplon, Sckalk Burger? for surely those guys are done! who wants 2 bet? Dream on Suckers, hehehehehe!!!

      chumani.ngcokovane - 2013-02-07 07:35

      Haha sorry to burst your bubble bud, wat type of question is that? We have got enough depth to send most of the bulls players to the kings. Hence we won the currie cup without most of the players you have mentioned. Relax YOUR GHOST meet you at loftus

  • tieno.punzul - 2013-01-29 13:21

    Pappa, ek dink die bulle is op die regte pad, so bietjie skaafwerk aan disiplinne, Spies wat weer top vorm gaan bereik, en opwindende senters wat die res van SA se ouens gaan deurmekaar hardloop. Bulls management, geen verskonings die jaar, ons soek te minste n' semi op loftus.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 00:45

      Whahahaha. Wanneer het die Bulls ooit al 'n senter paar gehad wat die res van die land deurmekaar gehardloop het? Spies op top vorm is seker die swakste 8steman in SA, as jy Ricky January nie in aanmerking neem nie. Dan het die Bulls nog vir Wallaby Hougaard - daar is reeds 10 punte vir die opposisie. Turnstile Steyn wat nie 'n bal kan oorskop nie. En dan begin ons nie van sy tackle-onvermoee te praat nie. Macguyver Greyling gaan seker weer in die grond gescrum word en dan wil baklei. Bang-gat Kruger gaan nie vir Etzebeth daar he om hom te beskerm nie - net ou Flop, wat heelwaarskynlik op die geelkaart-stoeltjie gaan sit. En dan het hulle nog vir Nik-naks wat die bal vir die opposisie gaan terugskop. So al hierdie spelers in ag geneem gaan dit maar 'n droewige jaar vir julle wees. Semi op Loftus? Sorry Tienkie-winkie, maar semi's word nie op neutrale velde gespeel nie. Dit word op een van die semi-finaliste se veld gespeel. So gaan vertel weer jou nonsens vir jou Pappa sodat hy jou 'n oorveeg kan gee om by te kom.

  • steven.crofton - 2013-01-30 14:22

    As a Bok supporter above all else I can't wait to see how Lionel and Jan pair up. They're both young and seriously talented.

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