Selection shake-up for battling Bulls

Wed, 25 Sep 2013 11:38
Large handre pollard  bulls train Large pine pienaar630 Large pine pienaar training 630

Blue Bulls coach Pine Pienaar, in a desperate bid to salvage something from a disastrous season, has made six changes to his starting line-up.

Blue Bulls coach Pine Pienaar, in a desperate bid to salvage something from a disastrous season, has made six changes to his starting line-up.

The recall of a fit-again Handré Pollard, along with first starts for William Small-Smith and David Bullbring, and returns for Sampie Mastriet and Marcel van der Merwe highlight the Bulls team selection ahead of their must-win Currie Cup clash against Griquas in Kimberley on Saturday.

Jurgen Visser also returns at fullback and Clayton Blommetjies drops down to the bench.

Pollard missed last week's clash against the Golden Lions due to an ankle injury and comes in for Tony Jantjies.

Mastriet made way for Springbok Bjorn Basson's cameo appearance for the team and reclaims his place.

Van der Merwe replaces injured Morné Mellett as loosehead prop.

Small-Smith and Bullbring have not started a Currie Cup match for the Blue Bulls.

The outside centre, Small-Smith, swaps places with Ulrich Beyers, who move to the bench.

Bullbring comes in for Wilhelm Steenkamp at lock, with the latter dropping out of the match 22 altogether.

A fit-again Bongi Mbonambi has also been recalled and will play off the bench, with Jaco Visagie returning to the Under-21 side.

According to Pienaar, the team has been selected with a specific plan in mind.

"I think it is fair to say that we will try and play in a particular way and for that, we will need a very strong contribution from our bench," Pienaar said.

"All 22 will have to contribute if we want to beat Griquas in Kimberley.

"They are a very dangerous side at home and came so close in a number of their matches.

"This really will be our toughest challenge of the season, given our log position and the number of matches left."

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

Date: Saturday, September 28
Venue: GWK Park, Kimberley
Kick-off: 14.00 (12.00 GMT)
Referee: Quinton Immelman
Assistant referees: Lesego Legoete, Francois de Bruin
TMO: Gerrie Coetzee

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 March 2017
Crusaders v Force 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Waratahs 08h45 Melbourne
Glasgow Warriors v Connacht 17h15 Scotstoun Stadium
Scarlets v Edinburgh 19h05 Parc y Scarlets
Treviso v Ospreys 19h35 Stadio Monigo
Dragons v Ulster 19h35 Rodney Parade
Sat, 25 March 2017
Blues v Bulls 06h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Highlanders 08h45 Canberra
Sunwolves v Stormers 10h55 Singapore
Kings v Lions 13h05 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Zebre v Munster 14h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons 15h00 Twickenham Stoop
Saracens v Bath 15h00 Allianz Park
Leinster v Cardiff Blues 15h00 RDS Arena
Northampton Saints v Leicester Tigers 15h00 Franklin's Gardens
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 15h00 Sandy Park
Cheetahs v Sharks 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Ospreys 19h35 Stadio Monigo
Jaguares v Reds 21h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 26 March 2017
Wasps v Worcester Warriors 14h30 Ricoh Arena
Bristol v Gloucester 15h00 Ashton Gate
Mon, 27 March 2017
NWU-Pukke v UP-Tuks 14h45 Potchefstroom
Fort Hare v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Davidson Stadium
Wits v UCT-Ikeys 16h30 Johannesburg
NMMU-Madibaz v CUT-Ixias 16h30 Bloemfontein
UWC v WSU 16h30 Cape Town
Maties v UJ 17h00 Stellenbosch
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Free State Cheetahs 8 8 0 0 39
Blue Bulls 8 6 0 2 30
Western Province 8 5 0 3 27
Golden Lions 8 5 0 3 26
Sharks 8 5 0 3 25
Griquas 8 4 0 4 21
Boland 8 2 0 6 11
Pumas 8 1 0 7 10
EP Kings 8 0 0 8 1