Jean to Cook for Bulls

Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:22
Large jean cook blue bulls2 Large dewald potgieter headphones Large deon stegmann bulls2 Large jean cook blue bulls Large flip van der merwe bulls 63

Former South African schools star Jean Cook is set to make his Super Rugby debut for the Bulls against the Western Force at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

Former South African schools star Jean Cook is set to make his Super Rugby debut for the Bulls against the Western Force at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

Injuries to Springboks Dewald Potgieter (knee ligaments) and Deon Stegmann (hamstring) forced coach Frans Ludeke to make a number of changes to his team that beat the Stormers last week.

Fellow Boks Jacques Potgieter and Arno Botha will replace them on the flanks.

The 21-year-old Cook, who represented the SA Schools team in 2009 and moved from the Cheetahs to the Bulls last year, comes onto the bench and will make his Super Rugby debut if he takes to the field.

Cook was scheduled to play for the University of Pretoria in a Varsity Cup match against their Stellenbosch rivals on Monday, but the Tuks loose forward was pulled out of the squad late on Monday, after the Bulls were informed that two of their Bok flanks will not be available or the encounter with the Force.

* Meanwhile lock Flip van der Merwe will play in his 50th Super Rugby match when his team takes on the Force.

Van der Merwe has played six of his previous 49 Super Rugby matches for the Cheetahs, whilst still a student in Bloemfontein, and the commerce graduate has since reeled off 43 matches for the Bulls.

The Bok lock will again combine with Juandrè Kruger in the engine room, but it is behind them in the scrum where the most significant changes are to the team that beat the Stormers last weekend.

The backline also has a significant change.

Bok Lionel Mapoe moves from wing to outside centre in place of the injured JJ Engelbrecht (hip flexor), with Sampie Mastriet to make his debut on the right wing.

Jan Serfontein has also been named on the bench and replace Francois Venter in the No.22 shirt.

Bulls coach Frans Ludeke was pleased to have Springbok experience to fall back on, but warned that it guarantees nothing against an opponent that has beaten the Bulls at Loftus before.

"Last week was last week," Ludeke said, adding: "We are grateful for the win, but this week we face a new opponent that will post new challenges.

"The Western Force has been a difficult opponent in the past and will again ask questions to our all round game and our defence. We have prepared well though and will be looking forward to the challenge."

Bulls captain Pierre Spies admitted that a good performance would be paramount for his side before they embark on their overseas leg of the competition.

"We cannot look past this match as it will determine the mind-set we will take onto tour. So this is a very important match for us," Spies said.

Milestones for the Bulls this week:
* Flip van der Merwe will play in his 50th Super Rugby match.
* Morné Steyn continues to extend his points record in the competition. He has now scored 1221 points (11 tries, 211 conversions, 224 penalties and 24 drop-goals), all of which are South African records.
* Wynand Olivier will play in his 104 match for the Bulls, making him the most experienced South African midfielder in Super Rugby. He has also scored 29 tries, the most in the squad.

Bulls: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Sampie Mastriet, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies, 7 Jacques Potgieter, 6 Arno Botha, 5 Juandre Kruger, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Morné Mellet.
Replacements: 16 Willie Wepener, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Grant Hattingh, 19 Jean Cook, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Louis Fouché, 22 Jan Serfontein.

Date: Saturday, March 2
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 17.05 (15.05 GMT)
Referee: Jason Jaftha (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa),Sieg van Staden (South Africa)
TMO: Johan Greeff (South Africa)

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Wed, 31 May 2017
New Zealand U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
England U20 v Samoa U20 07h00 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v France U20 09h30 Tbilisi
Ireland U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
Australia U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
Fri, 02 June 2017
Blues v Reds 07h35 Auckland
Sat, 03 June 2017
Crusaders v Highlanders 02h35 Christchurch
Chiefs v Waratahs 05h05 Hamilton
NZ Barbarians v B&I Lions 07h35 Toll Stadium
Brumbies v Rebels 09h45 Canberra
Force v Hurricanes 11h35 Perth
Sun, 04 June 2017
Ireland U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v France U20 07h00 Tbilisi
New Zealand U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Australia U20 v Samoa U20 09h30 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
England U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 28 May 2017
Lions v Kings 54 | 10
Sat, 27 May 2017
Jaguares v Brumbies 15 | 39
Munster v Scarlets 22 | 46
Sharks v Stormers 22 | 10
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 20 | 23
Bulls v Hurricanes 20 | 34
Rebels v Crusaders 19 | 41
Highlanders v Waratahs 44 | 28
Sunwolves v Cheetahs 7 | 47
Fri, 26 May 2017
Reds v Force 26 | 40
Blues v Chiefs 16 | 16
Sun, 21 May 2017
Waratahs v Rebels 50 | 23
Sat, 20 May 2017
Kings v Brumbies 10 | 19
Munster v Ospreys 23 | 3
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 21 | 20
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 12 5 0 7 28
Waratahs 12 4 0 8 19
Force 12 4 0 8 17
Reds 12 3 0 9 16
Rebels 12 1 1 10 8
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 13 13 0 0 59
Hurricanes 12 10 0 2 48
Highlanders 13 10 0 3 45
Chiefs 12 9 1 2 45
Blues 13 6 1 6 33
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 12 7 0 5 34
Cheetahs 13 3 0 10 16
Bulls 12 3 0 9 15
Sunwolves 12 1 0 11 7
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 13 12 0 1 56
Sharks 13 9 1 3 42
Jaguares 12 5 0 7 24
Kings 12 4 0 8 19