blue bulle name Bok side
June 28, 2012, 12:22:09
Vodacom Bulls coach Frans Ludeke signaled his intent to ensure his team doesn’t let up in their quest for a play-off place as he named a Springbok-laden team to face the Toyota Cheetahs at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
The Bulls named all their returning Springbok players, and a starting line-up that has no fewer than 14 national players – with the only uncapped Bok being JJ Engelbrecht who was with the national squad for the England test series.
Back from injury is Bok fullback Zane Kirchner, who injured his knee in the first test against England, while Jacques Potgieter, who missed the loss against the Stormers, is back on the openside flank, with CJ Stander dropping to the bench and Arno Botha falling out of the match 22.
Potgieter’s return gives the Bulls two Potties – his housemate and namesake Dewald will form the loose trio with captain Pierre Spies in a game the Bulls know all too well they cannot afford to lose.
Coach Frans Ludeke said he was impressed with the way the Boks had returned to him from the national squad, and was sure they would be putting their best foot forward this coming weekend.
“I was really impressed with the whole mindset of the guys coming back from the national squad. The urgency was there and they want to carry on where they left off with the Boks,” Ludeke said.(Not too well put the Ludeke considering the third test performance)
“The other guys went through two weeks of training – we almost had a mini pre-season and gave more balance between training and off time in between.”
Ludeke said while permutations will come into play, he needed his team to be accurate this weekend to stop a three-game losing streak that threatens their title aspirations.
“We must be accurate this weekend if we want to be successful. We know what is needed,” Ludeke explained. “It’s always an 80-minute game against the Cheetahs, but we are looking forward to the challenge.
“They played with a lot of freedom in the last few games, obviously without the worry of trying for the playoffs. But you could see they give the ball a lot of air and try a lot of counter attacks. They always have a good setpiece and the gain line battle is always tough against them. We need to ensure we get quality possession against them to launch our game plan and be successful.”
The fact that the Cheetahs, who only had captain Adriaan Strauss at the Boks, will be well-rested is another aspect the Bulls will take into consideration, but while it may sound like a cliché in these parts, the Bulls team have the talent, and they will need to run their own race. (No Coenie spells trouble for Cheethas)
Their destiny is now in their own hands. This team needs to face up to it.
VODACOM BULLS: Zane Kirchner, Akona Ndungane, JJ Engelbrecht, Wynand Olivier, Bjorn Basson, Mornè Steyn, Francois Hougaard, Pierre Spies (c), Jacques Potgieter, Dewald Potgieter, Juandrè Kruger, Flip van der Merwe, Werner Kruger, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Dean Greyling. Replacements: Willie Wepener, Frik Kirsten, Wilhelm Steenkamp, CJ Stander, Jano Vermaak, Louis Fouché, Francois Venter.
A side packed with fringe Boks . Need couple of real Stars to lift them perhaps?