JOHANNESBURG – The Bulls revived their Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde role with a second-round 27-12 defeat to the Jaguares in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
As tactically astute as they were a week ago against the Stormers, so abysmally lost were they against the Argentine franchise.
In wet and slippery conditions the Jaguares ultimately adapted better to the circumstances for a deserved victory.
The Bulls came into the match buoyed by a polished performance against the Stormers in Pretoria, looking to claim their first win over the Jaguares in their own backyard. It was not to be as they suffered their third consecutive defeat in Argentina.
Bulls mentor Pote Human admitted his charges did a poor job at adjusting to the conditions.
“They used the conditions better while they placed us under immense pressure with their rush defence,” Human said.
The Bulls seemed confused about how to approach the match with scrumhalf Embrose Papier giving away valuable possession with aimless box kicks.
When the Pretoria side had possession of the ball, they lacked the necessary patience to grind their way over the gain line. Instead, they played like overeager teenagers which ultimately resulted in turnover ball due to unforced errors.
Human gave an honest assessment of his team’s performance in Buenos Aires where their scrum creaked especially after Schalk Brits and Trevor Nyakane left the field.
“The performance was simply not good enough and everyone in the team knows this,” Human said. “We will have to refocus and come back with a strong performance against the Lions.
“The conditions were tough for both sides, I am not happy with the performance tonight and neither are the players. We know that we are much better than this.”
Although Springbok flyhalf Handré Pollard nailed four of his kicks at goal, he did not manage the game in the way he did a week ago.
The Bulls were still looking in good shape going into the half-time break trailing the Jaguares 7-3 after the home side scored a try from turnover ball.
Matias Orlando collected a wayward skip pass by Pollard for a 70m sprint to the line to give his side the lead.
The Bulls briefly took the lead shortly after the break but a Jaguares try from a driving maul put them bck in front. Bautista Delguy landed the deciding blow with a converted try in the 73rd minute.@ockertde