Jake sticks with same XV as Bulls take aim at Pumas
CAPE TOWN - Bulls coach Jake White will be hoping for more of the same from his team after he gave them a vote of confidence by opting for an unchanged starting line-up for Tuesday’s Preparation Series clash against the Pumas at Mbombela Stadium (7pm kickoff).
The Super Rugby Unlocked and Currie Cup champions walloped Eastern Province 87-10 in their last encounter on February 28 at Loftus Versfeld, and White gave an opportunity to a number of players who didn’t get much game time last season.
He chose to grant those men another chance to stake their claim for a place in the starting unit for the upcoming Rainbow Cup against the Pumas, who will be looking to pull off another win over the Bulls after emerging 44-14 victors in the Currie Cup.
Nizaam Carr will captain the team once more, while there are a couple of new faces on the bench, such as scrumhalf Bernard van der Linde and fullback Richard Kriel.
“The boys did well last week and the coaching management were impressed in how they kept to the plan, even when the game opened up,” White said in a statement on Monday.
“It could have become a free-for-all once we got leg-room on the scoreboard, but we want to simulate in-competition scenarios to help us better prepare for upcoming competitions, and I must commend Nizaam and his leadership group for keeping the players focused on the objectives and outcomes we wanted to achieve.
“This week will be no different and although the starting team hasn’t changed much, there’s a ton of new faces on the bench that want their boots on the field and to put their names forward.
“The last time we travelled to Nelspruit with a rather young and inexperienced team, we lost badly to a powerful and well-oiled Pumas bunch.
“I’m looking forward to seeing how this group has developed since then. We’re excited to get to Nelspruit and play our brand of rugby.”
15 David Kriel 14 Madosh Tambwe 13 Marnus Potgieter 12 Marco Jansen van Vuren 11 Stravino Jacobs 10 Chris Smith 9 Embrose Papier 8 WJ Steenkamp 7 Tim Agaba 6 Nizaam Carr (captain) 5 Janko Swanepoel 4 Jan Uys 3 Mornay Smith 2 Joe van Zyl 1 Gerhard Steenekamp.
Bench: 16 Janco Uys 17 Jan-Hendrik Wessels 18 Nolan Pienaar 19 Reinhardt Ludwig 20 Werner Gouws 21 Bernard van der Linde 22 Clinton Swart 23 Richard Kriel 24 Henco Beukes 25 Willie Potgieter 26 Dawid Kellerman.