PRETORIA – The Bulls win against the Hurricanes is now a distant memory and has been made to seem like a flash-in-the-pan performance.
All of this is on the back of the men from Loftus Versfeld sinking to their second successive defeat over the weekend to the Reds after being beaten by the Lions a week before.
And the Bulls now face a mammoth task in New Zealand where they will play against the Chiefs in Hamilton on Friday – kickoff is at 8.35am – before taking on “mission impossible” in their encounter against the Crusaders in Christchurch.
But the Bulls are hopeful that the tide will turn in Hamilton as they are fully aware of what went wrong in Brisbane against the Reds, according to wing Travis Ismaiel.
Ismaiel believes that coach John Mitchell has provided them with a winning blueprint, but it is them not following it that has led to their losses against the Lions and Reds.
As much as they rectified their lineout issues in the game against the Reds – which had led to their loss against the Lions – the Bulls revealed new weaknesses about themselves in Brisbane.
Part of their shortcomings was their lack of patience on attack, while not making the best of the opportunities created.
Ismaiel is hopeful that within this week, they would have learnt from their frailties against the Reds and will be a much better side.
“It was very disappointing because we set ourselves up to win that game as we started well,” Ismaiel said from Hamilton.
“We didn’t stick to our processes and made a few silly errors and went off plan. Hopefully, this week we can stick to the plan and continue with what we’ve done this season.”
Beyond just the hope of the Bulls doing well in Hamilton and for the rest of the season, the 25-year-old Ismaiel wants to finally live out his dream of becoming a Springbok.
Ismaiel has shown good form in a losing Bulls cause with an impressive long-range solo try against the Lions, while his runs from deep in his half also tore the Reds defence to shreds for scrumhalf André Warner’s try.
“I hope so,” said Ismaiel. “I just take it one week at a time as always and in past seasons as well.
“If the Bulls do well, it will catch anyone’s eye, and hopefully I can get into the mix and if I keep playing well.”