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Preview: Vodacom Blue Bulls vs. Sharks


The Vodacom Blue Bulls are back at fort Loftus and they know one needs to win your homes games if you want to have a home semifinal in October.

Saturday's game at Loftus against the unbeaten Sharks is the Blue Bulls' first home game in 2008's Currie Cup and Wikus van Heerden and his team is desperate to get back on the winning track after they stumbled at Newlands a week ago.

KEY BATTLES

 

Lineouts – Derick Kuün vs. Craig Burden

The lineouts are going to be a mess for another few weeks because of the "no numbers' law that that were introduced.

The problem with the new lineout law is that the opposition is allowed to outnumber you in the lineout and in simple terms it means that they will be able put 9 players in a lineout to compete in the front, middle and back.

In order to illustrate the point I will try to explain it like this:

The opposition will put nine players in the lineout: six supporters and three jumpers.

SJS SJS SJS

S = supporter

J = jumper

The most of the teams in the Currie Cup will go with seven men on their own ball in the lineout, but the opposition will have three contesting pots (SJS). That is why all the teams were struggling to win their own ball in the first two rounds of the Curie Cup.

Kuün, who use to play flank, as well as Burden, who was a wing in his younger days, will be under enormous pressure throughout the match to find their jumpers and however reign supreme in this department will drastically increase his team's changes of a victory.

 

Tighthead battle – Werner Kruger vs. BJ Botha

No matter what laws are being used the battle at tighthead will always be of utmost importance and fiercely contested.

Rayno Gerber and BJ Botha had an intense clash in the Super 14 and on Saturday Werner Kruger and BJ Botha will frantically try to get a right shoulder for their respective teams.

A right shoulder opens up wonderful attacking opportunities for a team and it always gives the front row a huge psychological advantage over their opponents if they manage to control the scrums.

 

Battle on the ground – Wikus van Heerden/Deon Stegmann vs. Jacques Botes/Keegan Daniel

These four players are all very effective on the ground but they will be more hesitant to do something illegal on the ground because the referee will award a penalty and not a free kick for an offense.

Because of the penalties the loose forwards tend to be a bit more careful at the rucks but it still is their responsibility to slow down the opposition's ball and whoever is able to do this (without conceding penalties) will struck a major blow for his team.

 

Fullbacks – Tiger Mangweni vs. Stefan Terblanche

Terblanche is the kingpin the Sharks' backline and he is also the player who is responsible to do most of their kicking. If you don't dominate the territory battle it is very difficult to win a game and Terblanche will have the responsibility to get the Sharks out of their own half.

Mangweni had an absolute blinder against the Lions and although he wasn't as prominent against the WP, much ill depend on him to get the Bulls in the Sharks' half.

WHAT THE COACHES SAID

"The most important thing for me is that we must play for 80 minutes. We turned our Super 14 campaign around when we started to play for the full 80 minutes and I expect nothing less when we play the Sharks at Loftus on Saturday.

"They are still unbeaten and they definitely have the ability to guts it out for 80 minutes.

They showed a lot of character to beat the WP and they were not in the Super 14 play-offs for nothing.

"They are a very good team and I believe they are going to give the ball air. They are also able to pass in contact and that makes them a very difficult opponent. - Blue Bulls coach Frans Ludeke

"It will be a totally different kettle of fish, the boys need no extra motivation going to Loftus. The Bulls will be exceptionally disappointed about their loss to Western Province after being 17-3 up to toss it away. So it's a huge game for them and we're really looking forward to the challenge."

"To be honest, you're only as good as your last game and if you turn back the clock to Friday night, we weren't very good at all, so what happened last year or last month really has nothing to do with what happens on Saturday at 5 o'clock, and if we arrive in the right frame of mind to play rugby, I think we will go well. I'm quite sure the boys will be up for it.

"It's always a challenge losing players, but every year when we do, there are youngsters who come through and make names for themselves," Bashford points out. "It wasn't long ago that the Daniels, the Kankowskis, the Beasts weren't household names and they had to make the step up. We hopefully have other guys in the wings that are looking for the opportunity to do the same, and really, that's their responsibility. All we can do is help them by giving them opportunities. What they do with those opportunities is entirely up to them." - Sharks assistance coach Grant Bashford,

WHAT THE MEDIA SAID

"The Blue Bulls will have to get more possession than in the WP-game. They will have to get it right in the lineouts this time. The return of Wikus van Heerden will be a moral booster, as well as a big asset in the loose. The Sharks love to throw the ball around; therefore the Bulls tactical kicking will have to be spot-on. Expect Derick Hougaard to play at least the whole second half. He will have a big impact on the game in the last 30 minutes." – Koos Venter (Rekord)

"While the Blue Bulls are grappling with history with the Sharks finding Loftus Versfeld a happy hunting ground in seasons gone by, the Sharks are going through some upheaval as they try to put together a team that can stand up to the Blue Bulls this coming Saturday.

"This week the Blue Bulls made no bones about their excitement and anticipation as they return to their home ground for their first match of the Currie Cup campaign in Pretoria.

Their's was meant to be a shared excitement and anticipation as the Sharks must have been rubbing their hands and salivating at the prospect of coming to their beloved Loftus.

How quickly things change.

"The Sharks two wins, first over Western Province and over the Boland Kavaliers last week has come at a heavy price, one that has probably left the Sharks players pondering whether this is a good time to play the Bulls at home. Injuries have ravaged Sharks coach John Plumtree's master plan and have already deprived the Sharks of Steven Sykes and Rory Kockott. Yesterday, Bradley Barritt was in doubt after sustaining an injury at training leaving Plumtree with a tricky selection process ahead of an equally tricky encounter against a team that is driven by a desperation to win." – Vata Ngobeni (Pretoria News)

THE TEAMS

Vodacom Blue Bulls: Tiger Mangweni; Akona Ndungane, Marius Delport, Wynand Olivier, John Mametsa; Morné Steyn, JP Joubert; Pedrie Wannenburg, Wikus van Heerden (captain), Deon Stegmann, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Danie Rossouw, Werner Kruger, Derick Kuün, Jaco Engels. Replacements: Bandise Maku, Rayno Gerber, Francois van Schouwenburg, Jacques Burger, Francois Hougaard, Derick Hougaard, Zane Kirchner.

Probable Sharks team: Stefan Terblanche; Chris Jordaan, Waylon Murray, Andries Strauss, Henno Mentz; Monty Dumond, Scott Mathie; Keegan Daniel, Nick Strauss, Jacques Botes, Johann Muller (captain), Albert van den Berg, BJ Botha, Skipper Badenhorst, Deon Carstens. Replacements: Craig Burden, Jannie du Plessis, Alistair Hargreaves, Skholiwe Ndlovu, Charl McLeod, Riaan Swanepoel, Andrew Borgen.

Venue: Loftus Versfeld

Kick-off: 17:05

Referee: JC Fortuin

Touch judges: Christie du Preez, Cobus Wessels

TMO: Michael Cupido

 





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Blog
1. Tellings vir Saterdag:

Bulle 28 - 16 Chokers - Rustig
Bulle 21 - 14 Chokers - P2
Bulle 22 - 13 Chokers - Bergbok
Bulle 31 - 15 Chokers - AK
Bulle 26 - 13 Chokers - LB
Bulle 30 - 20 Chokers - B-i-B
Bulle 33 - 22 Chokers - B1
Bulle 43 - 22 Chokers - Die Stier
Bulle 28 - 14 Chokers - Blouboerseun
Bulle 34 - 18 Chokers - LUG BLOU
Bulle 27 - 12 Chokers - Jimmy
Bulle 17 - 24 Chokers - BITE*ME
Bulle 26 - 18 Chokers - Realistix
Bulle 17 - 09 Chokers - Blitz

Bokke 16 - 42 NZ - AK
Bokke 12 - 34 NZ - LB
Bokke 21 - 25 NZ - B-i-B
Bokke 23 - 45 NZ - B1
Bokke 28 - 38 NZ - Die Stier
Bokke 28 - 22 NZ - BITE*ME
Bokke 17 - 36 NZ - Blouboerseun
Bokke 21 - 15 NZ - LUG BLOU
Bokke 20 - 19 NZ - Jimmy
Bokke 15 - 13 NZ - Bergbok
Bokke 15 - 32 NZ - Realistix
Bokke 09 - 21 NZ - Blitz
Posted by Ligblou Baron (Pretoria) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 09:18
2. Mmmm, daai "waarskynlike" shaiks span lyk maar wankelrig??
Posted by Ligblou Baron (Pretoria) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 09:26
3. Lyk vir my hierdie "nommers" lynstaan reel het n negatiewe invloed op die game? Who ordered that!!!!
Posted by Ligblou Baron (Pretoria) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 09:29
4. 1. Tellings vir Saterdag:

Bulle 28 - 16 Chokers - Rustig
Bulle 21 - 14 Chokers - P2
Bulle 22 - 13 Chokers - Bergbok
Bulle 31 - 15 Chokers - AK
Bulle 26 - 13 Chokers - LB
Bulle 30 - 20 Chokers - B-i-B
Bulle 33 - 22 Chokers - B1
Bulle 43 - 22 Chokers - Die Stier
Bulle 28 - 14 Chokers - Blouboerseun
Bulle 34 - 18 Chokers - LUG BLOU
Bulle 27 - 12 Chokers - Jimmy
Bulle 17 - 24 Chokers - BITE*ME
Bulle 26 - 18 Chokers - Realistix
Bulle 17 - 09 Chokers - Blitz
Bulle 16 - Chokers 10 - Axeman

Bokke 16 - 42 NZ - AK
Bokke 12 - 34 NZ - LB
Bokke 21 - 25 NZ - B-i-B
Bokke 23 - 45 NZ - B1
Bokke 28 - 38 NZ - Die Stier
Bokke 28 - 22 NZ - BITE*ME
Bokke 17 - 36 NZ - Blouboerseun
Bokke 21 - 15 NZ - LUG BLOU
Bokke 20 - 19 NZ - Jimmy
Bokke 15 - 13 NZ - Bergbok
Bokke 15 - 32 NZ - Realistix
Bokke 09 - 21 NZ - Blitz
Bokke 08 - 16 NZ - Axeman

Posted by Russel (Almaty) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 09:55
5. Sharks beskik oor baie goeie vaste 5. Goeie lynstaan manne. Ek vermoed Kockot gaan speel.
Posted by mosselbaaibul (mossel Bay) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 10:08
6. More almal!

Ek wonder hoekom speel die Sharks hierdie kat en muis speletjie.
Hoop hulle dalk as daar dan verassingkies is dat dit ons onkant sal vang?

Ek hoop maar FL en die res van die afrigtingspan laat hulle nie so maklik vang nie.
Posted by Bulversie (Potchefstroom) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 10:18
7. Daisy,

Dankie dat jy my verdedig het gister.
Ek was nie bewus van die aanmerkings oor my nie, en gelukkig is dit afgehaal.

Ek steur my gelukkig nie aan mense wat persoonlik wil raak nie, dit gaan immers oor rugby hier.

Ek hoop jy en al die ander Bulle het 'n wonderlike dag!
Posted by Bulversie (Potchefstroom) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 10:23
8. Hello julle,more is dit BLOU!!!!Ons gaan lekker vis vang!!!
Posted by NatalBul (Vryheid) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 11:00
9. Kom julle,ons moet begin lawaai!!!!Met die Super 14 finaal laas jaar was ek verstom.Ek het nog nooit in my lewe so 'n gees gesien soos wat hier in Vryheid geheers het nie.Die ouens het skoon die "plot" verloor!Ek weet die CC is nog in sy baba skoene maar ons moet hom NOU al begin wen!!!!
Posted by NatalBul (Vryheid) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 11:04
10. More NatalBul,

Daar's nuwe draad!!!
Posted by Bulversie (Potchefstroom) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 11:08
11. Haai Bulversie,ja,is so.Ek glo Kockott gaan more speel en JP moet hom lamle dan is meeste van hul angel weg.Ek het 'n groot probleem met Kockott,die ouens laat hom goed lyk.Hulle moet hom onder druk plaas van die begin af dan sien jy hoe vou hy.
Posted by NatalBul (Vryheid) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 11:20
12. . Tellings vir Saterdag:

Bulle 28 - 16 Chokers - Rustig
Bulle 21 - 14 Chokers - P2
Bulle 22 - 13 Chokers - Bergbok
Bulle 31 - 15 Chokers - AK
Bulle 26 - 13 Chokers - LB
Bulle 30 - 20 Chokers - B-i-B
Bulle 33 - 22 Chokers - B1
Bulle 43 - 22 Chokers - Die Stier
Bulle 28 - 14 Chokers - Blouboerseun
Bulle 34 - 18 Chokers - LUG BLOU
Bulle 27 - 12 Chokers - Jimmy
Bulle 17 - 24 Chokers - BITE*ME
Bulle 26 - 18 Chokers - Realistix
Bulle 17 - 09 Chokers - Blitz
Bulle 16 - Chokers 10 - Axeman
Bulle 35 - 12 Chokers - Blouril

Bokke 16 - 42 NZ - AK
Bokke 12 - 34 NZ - LB
Bokke 21 - 25 NZ - B-i-B
Bokke 23 - 45 NZ - B1
Bokke 28 - 38 NZ - Die Stier
Bokke 28 - 22 NZ - BITE*ME
Bokke 17 - 36 NZ - Blouboerseun
Bokke 21 - 15 NZ - LUG BLOU
Bokke 20 - 19 NZ - Jimmy
Bokke 15 - 13 NZ - Bergbok
Bokke 15 - 32 NZ - Realistix
Bokke 09 - 21 NZ - Blitz
Bokke 08 - 16 NZ - Axeman
Bokke 12 - 36 NZ - Blouril
Posted by BLOU_RIL (GEE HULLE HORINGS!!!!!!!!!!!!) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 11:47
13. Hierdie haaispan lyk maar groen. Dink die bulle gaan met hulle mors.

Bulle 34 - 12 Sharks

Hoop regtig die Bokke bewys ons verkeerd

Bokke 21- 32 NZ
Posted by blouHenk (PE) Friday, July 04, 2008 - 12:31
14. Hi all from East London.

Bulls 23-15

Thank goodness that Lobberts has been left out - that thing is brain dead - please sell him to another province.............
Posted by Flapjan (East London) Saturday, July 05, 2008 - 09:17
15. Getting ready to watch the Bokke...go Bokke

bokke 19 NZ 18
Posted by Flapjan (East London) Saturday, July 05, 2008 - 09:18