No more 'soft moments' for Bulls

Wed, 03 Jul 2013 20:23
Large francois hougaard bulls run Large morne steyn looks Large jacques potgieter bulls cha Large chiliboy ralepelle  bulls t

The Bulls will need to be switched on for the full 80 minutes if they hope to add another W to their three-month unbeaten run.

The Bulls will need to be switched on for the full 80 minutes if they hope to add another W to their three-month unbeaten run.

With a much-improved Sharks team arriving at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday, the Bulls will not be able to get away with any 'soft' moments.

Their last loss was a 20-23 defeat to the Brumbies in Canberra on March 30 - a result pundits on both sides of the Indian Ocean agreed was daylight robbery.

Since that unfortunate Saturday, the Bulls have won eight games on the trot - with two byes and the June break thrown in for good measure.

If they win at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday and the Crusaders upstage the table-topping Chiefs in Christchurch on Friday, the Bulls will claim prime position in the standings.

However, they are focussed on the Sharks and not the table.

"We don't look at it like that," Bulls coach Frans Ludeke told this website, adding: "We are facing a good team that has been a huge challenge for us in the last few years.

"We will have to be on top of our game and very accurate on Saturday."

The Bulls mentor said that despite a good result, a six-try (48-18) demolition of the Southern Kings last week, there were still a number of areas of their game that were not spot on.

"Against the Sharks you need good set pieces, a good base from which you can get out of your area and launch attacks - that [setting a good platform] will be vital on Saturday," Ludeke said.

He felt that this is one of those games that bring out the best in the players from both side.

While the Bulls have been good this year at avoiding lapses in concentration, Saturday an 80-minute effort will be even more crucial - as the Sharks are past masters in exploiting lapses.

"I feel that most of the games we were competitive for the full 80 minutes and there were no real soft moments," Ludeke told this website.

"Last week we made a couple of errors and the Kings never stopped playing. There was a period just before the break - when they scored a good try - and they asked some tough questions of us.

"That is something we welcome as a team, because we know it will take an 80-minute effort [against the Sharks] on Saturday.

"In our last encounter against them in Durban [an 18-16 win for the Bulls in atrocious conditions] the guys were switched on for 80 minutes and it will need to be the same this Saturday."

Despite the big win the Bulls feel their finishing let them down in the second half.

"It was a reasonably disciplined performance [just nine penalties], but the scrum was an issue again," the coach said.

"We made that a focus this week.

"It is all about the quality of the possession we make available [to the backs]. It is vital to deliver quality possession [to the backs].

"Then, on defence we would like to be a more accurate [with only a 76 percent success rate in the tackle execution last week]. On the advantage line we will have to work very hard for 80 minutes - we have to stop their momentum."

By Jan de Koning

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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