The Bulls are back

Sat, 07 Sep 2013 17:04
Large bulls v cheetahs2 Large bulls v cheetahs Large bulls v cheetahs3

The Blue Bulls put their Currie Cup campaign firmly back on track with a convincing 26-10 win over the Free State Cheetahs in Pretoria on Saturday.

The Blue Bulls put their Currie Cup campaign firmly back on track with a convincing 26-10 win over the Free State Cheetahs in Pretoria on Saturday.

It may have been two-all in the try count, but it was up front where the Bulls made their biggest statement.

Dominating the set pieces and the breakdown, while producing a number of impressive mauls - one which resulted in their second try - the Bulls turned a 3-5 half-time deficit into an emphatic victory at Loftus Versfeld.

The win saw the men from Pretoria move away from last place on the standings, past Griquas - who had lost to the Lions earlier in the day.

The result of the Bulls' forward dominance was that Handré Pollard scored 16 points - two conversions and four penalties, while only missing one long-range effort, to turn in a wonderful all-round performance.

In stark contrast, the Cheetahs' kickers could not succeed with any of their attempts at goal.

The other aspect is that a Bulls team who had so spectacularly imploded in the final quarter in recent matches, finally produced  the 80-minute effort their coach had asked for.

The visitors scored the only try of the first half, with wing Riaan Smit going over the whitewash. The visitors sent the ball through the hands with Sadie tapping the ball to a flying Smit to score the try, with the wing missing with his conversion attempt.

Bulls flyhalf Handré Pollard was successful with a penalty for his side's first half points.

Pollard started the second half in the same way he opened the match, adding three points to the score to hand his side the lead for the second time in the match.

Four minutes later the 19-year-old extended their lead to 9-5 with a successful penalty conversion and, missed another in the 52nd minute.

Pollard, however, landed his fourth goal four minutes later before the Bulls finally scored their first try of the match in the 63rd minute, and the teenager added the extra two points.

Bulls lock Paul Willemse advanced within metres of the line, and only had to stretch out his arm to add the five-pointer.

The Cheetahs launched a fight back with flyhalf Elgar Watts scoring in the 69th minute, but by this time the horse had bolted as he failed with his own conversion attempt.

The hosts put the game to bed when Wian Liebenberg touched down from a rolling maul, with Pollard converting .

Man of the match: Elgar Watts may not have been flawless, but he certainly showed some of the skilful touches that makes him such a magical player. Teboho Mohoje also put in some momentous work. Handré Pollard is starting to settle down in the No.10 jersey, while Paul Willemse added the muscle up front. However, our award goes to Blue Bulls hooker Mbongeni Mbonambi - not only was he strong with his carries, but he was a monster on defence.

The scorers:

For the Blue Bulls:
Tries:
Willemse, W Liebenberg
Cons: Pollard 2
Pens: Pollard 4

For the Free State Cheetahs:
Tries:
Smit, Watts

Teams:

Blue Bulls: 15 Jürgen Visser, 14 Sampie Mastriet, 13 Waylon Murray, 12 Francois Venter, 11 Akona Ndungane, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Ruan Snyman, 8 Jono Ross (captain), 7 Jacques Engelbrecht, 6 Wiaan Liebenberg, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Frik Kirsten, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Marcel van der Merwe.
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Werner Kruger, 18 David Bulbring, 19 Jacques du Plessis, 20 Rudy Paige, 21 Ulrich Beyers, 22 Clayton Blommetjies.

Free State Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Riaan Smit, 13 Johann Sadie, 12 Robert Ebersohn, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Elgar Watts, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Pieter Labuschagne, 6 Johannes Prinsloo (captain), 5 Lodewyk de Jager, 4 Teboho Mohoje, 3 Rossouw de Klerk, 2 Hercu Liebenberg, 1 Trevor Nyakane.
Replacements: 16 Ethienne Reynecke, 17 Wian du Preez, 18 Waltie Vermeulen, 19 Davon Raubenheimer, 20 Kevin Luiters, 21 Willie du Plessis, 22 Piet Lindeque.

Referee: Stuart Berry
Assistant Referees: Marius Jonker and Cobus Wessels
TMO: Tappe Henning

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 April 2018
Munster v Ulster 22h00 Thomond Park
Kings v Cheetahs 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Treviso v Zebre 22h00 Stadio Monigo
Dragons v Scarlets 22h00 Rodney Parade
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 22h00 Myreside
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Connacht v Leinster 22h00 Sportsground
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 22h00 Sixways
Wasps v Northampton Saints 22h00 Ricoh Arena
London Irish v Saracens 22h00 Madejski Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 22h00 Welford Road
Gloucester v Bath 22h00 Kingsholm
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 22h00 Sandy Park
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 22 April 2018
Racing Metro v Munster 27 | 22
Brumbies v Jaguares 20 | 25
Sat, 21 April 2018
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 36 | 15
Zebre v Ospreys 37 | 14
Sharks v Stormers 24 | 17
Leinster v Scarlets 38 | 16
Bulls v Rebels 28 | 10
Reds v Chiefs 12 | 36
Crusaders v Sunwolves 33 | 11
Fri, 20 April 2018
Waratahs v Lions 0 | 29
Blues v Highlanders 16 | 34
Sun, 15 April 2018
Saracens v Bath 41 | 6
London Irish v Exeter Chiefs 5 | 45
Sat, 14 April 2018
Leinster v Treviso 15 | 17
Kings v Cardiff Blues 12 | 45
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 12 10 0 2 47
Western Province 12 7 0 5 37
Golden Lions 12 6 0 6 35
Blue Bulls 12 5 0 7 32
Free State Cheetahs 12 6 0 6 31
Pumas 12 4 0 8 27
Griquas 12 4 0 8 26