Ludeke quietly confident

2012-02-12 21:51

Johannesburg - Bulls coach Frans Ludeke is cautiously optimistic about the coming rugby season after his team - in their first and only outing with a probable Super Rugby squad - comprehensively beat the Cheetahs 39-16 at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on Saturday.

The Bulls excelled up front where their retention was outstanding, and the young backline also showed their potential against a shallow and committed Cheetahs defence that gave little away.

Ultimately, however, it was about more than just the winning for Ludeke.

"What was important for me was to look at the things we had been working on, our combinations; there were a number of new players on the field who hadn't played for us before. We therefore had other goals," said Ludeke.

He was impressed with the Bulls' ball retention, but felt they should have finished off more of their opportunities. "It was a tough contest. It always is against the Cheetahs. We both played to get field position, and I think we succeeded on the day a little better than they did," he said.

"We can say we're happy, there is lots of hope for the season as well. A problem was the decision-making," Ludeke said.

He said opportunities were lost mainly through hanging on to the ball for too long and not feeding the man-over.

He pointed out that this was to be expected in an early outing.

Ludeke said they could only improve and he felt that a great foundation had been laid for the season ahead.

He was also happy with the Bulls' defence in smothering the Cheetahs' attacks.

Ludeke said that the Cheetahs were good with ball in hand throughout the match, although they had little in the way of possession for the first 50 minutes or so.

The Bulls coach's decision to shuffle his backline as a whole also paid dividends.

Of the starting XV, he moved Francois Hougaard to wing in the place of Bjorn Basson, who in turn moved to fullback with Zane Kirchner being deployed at outside centre.

Outside centre Johann Sadie moved to inside centre in place of Francois Venter, who was replaced after a satisfactory first outing at this level.

Louis Fouché replaced Morné Steyn at flyhalf while Jano Vermaak took Hougaard's place behind the scrum.

Ludeke said the changes were to ascertain what reserve strength he had in all the positions, and was happy with the move.


  • Bulldozer - 2012-02-12 21:58

    Us supporters are quietly confident as well. Unlike the Stormers supporters who are over confident, as usual.

      Blou-Daan - 2012-02-12 22:25

      @Buldozer Nes jy daar se my maat. Ek dink daai ding van "over confident" is deel van die Stormers ondersteuners se ondergang. Hulle wil elke jaar die beker in Feb wen en wen dan niks. Dink maar net aan Bootman :-)

      Bambie - 2012-02-12 22:29

      JA Bull wat kan ons se...Dink daai klomp viskoppe is in vir n ding die seisoen... en dit is defnatief nie n beker nie...Miskien Parkie Bekker en sy die naaste wat hulle aan n beker sal kom..

      Bambie - 2012-02-12 22:39

      Daan...Daai ou se naam is confusing... is BOOT soos in boot wat dryf of boot soos in sy datsun se boot is te klein vir sy papsak of is dit these boot (like in boots) are made for walking of the field with out a cup in ten years???

      Blou-Daan - 2012-02-12 23:01

      @Bambie Ek is bly jy mention dit want ek het ook al gewonder oor die Bootman gedoente. Is dit nou die ou met die papsak wat stewels "repair" of is dit die ou met die papsak en die boot wat snoek vang daar agter die golwe? Maar al wat ons wel weet is dat hy nou nie juis baie van rugby weet nie en nog net bekers op TV gesien het :-)

      Paul - 2012-02-12 23:12

      Massive performance by the boys in blue, Doze, have to extend my congrats. On this kind of form the Bulls will be hard to beat. That last try looked so much like a Lions try I had to pinch myself to check if I wasn't dreaming. If you guys are actually gonna play real rugby this year, the rest of us are worried...

      Will - 2012-02-13 04:31

      I wont be very confident if a girl is leading my teams backline

      Jason - 2012-02-13 06:21

      Cant wait to trash you guys.

  • Dawie - 2012-02-12 23:03

    Oh don't be modest Frans, you know and we all know and agree that the Bulls will take their millionth Super trophy

  • Bootman - 2012-02-12 23:23

    Hi All, Just wanted to say I woke up, all sober now! Please ignore my previous intoxicated posts. Eventhough I support WP/Stormers, I have to admit they can't even start to compare with the mighty Bulls. Who can argue with 3 Supercups, 4.5 CC and 3 Vodacoms in the last decade versus ZERO. And the mighty Bulls look like they'll do it again this year I thinking of becoming a Bull, I also want to get a little pleasure out of my rugby

      Jason - 2012-02-13 06:22

      Well then it would appear as though you are going to be mighty disappointed with your new team selection

      Bootman - 2012-02-13 07:29

      Wow you copied my profile. I think I should feel honoured because you went through all the trouble. I must be getting to you.

      aubrey.gloster - 2012-02-13 09:48

      Mooi Bootman, welkom in die Transvaal waar brandy en coke baas is en nie 'n pasak nie.

      Bootman - 2012-02-13 16:00

      @Ugly Jason You back??? Where were you passed out?

  • Bootman - 2012-02-12 23:24

    I agree with Frans, more fireworks from the Bulls coming up

      Bootman - 2012-02-13 07:30

      Wow you copied my profile. I think I should feel honoured because you went through all the trouble. I must be getting to you.

      Bootman - 2012-02-13 16:02

      @Fake Bootman Go away idiot

  • Will - 2012-02-13 04:29

    I am very confident that the bulls will play boring 10-man rugby again. They dont have much skill.

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