PRETORIA – Earlier this week Blue Bulls head coach Pote Human rolled back the years and touched on his players heart strings by showing them what they stand to gain at the end of the Currie Cup season.
On Monday, Human hauled out pictures and memorabilia from the Bulls 2006 joint Currie Cup win along with the Free State Cheetahs and said nothing but leave his team to wonder what it would be like to have their hands on the oldest domestic rugby trophy in the world.
Those images struck a cord with Blue Bulls flank Jano Venter who was part of the Golden Lions team that won the title three years ago but doesn’t feel he did enough to claim to be a Currie Cup winner.
Back then, Venter had made his senior debut and went on to play five games for the Lions but missed out on featuring in the semi-finals and final because of the return of Springbok flank Jaco Kriel.
Now in his new life and second coming as a Bulls player, Venter feels that winning the Currie Cup will hold the same sentimental meaning that it does to Human and he will feel that he has played a meaningful role unlike before.
“Since I was a boy, I picture myself with that trophy. I used to play rugby with my brother in the garden and he was the Sharks and I was the Bulls. So from a young age it was actually a dream of mine. Now I’m here and we can do it, I know we can do it,” said Venter.
“We have good players, we are a close knit group and there is no feeling of senior and junior players. We are talking about it (trophy) and it is coach Pote’s dream to hold that trophy. He showed us in 2006 when the Cheetahs and Bulls drew to win the trophy and he showed us the small trophies they got. I think we can do it.
I had a taste of it in 2015 at the Lions and I missed out on the semi-finals and final because Jaco Kriel came back. I feel I wasn’t part of it because I didn’t play in that final but I think our boys can shock the whole country and do it.”
But the Bulls will need to win their upcoming Currie Cup encounter against the Pumas at Loftus Versfeld on Friday night if they are to realize Human’s and Venter’s dream.
If the Bulls are to make the semi-finals they will need to beat the Pumas with a bonus point and their last game of the round robin against Western Province.
Venter has likened the Bulls situation to his in it being his his last season to make an impact in the rugby fraternity before his contract with the Bulls runs out at the end of the season.
“It is make or break for us. It is just like my rugby future. We need to make good of our situation as a team and make sure that we win the game against the Pumas. I have to do the same, it is a make or break season for my career,” Venter said.@Vata_Ngobeni