Bulls have no 'scrum nightmares'

Thu, 13 Feb 2014 07:34
Large dean greyling bulls drinks Large frans ludeke media Large werner kruger bulls scrum

The Bulls' scrum has been branded a potential 'weakness' in the team's armoury, but coach Frans Ludeke is not having any nightmares.

The Bulls' scrum has been branded a potential 'weakness' in the team's armoury ahead of the 2014 Super Rugby season, but coach Frans Ludeke is not having any nightmares.

The first test will come when the men from Pretoria travel to Durban on Saturday to take on the Sharks' highly-rated all-Springbok front row.

Bulls props Werner Kruger and Dean Greyling, both also Boks, were among the most penalised front row forwards at scrum time in the 2013 Super Rugby competition - a list topped by Crusaders prop Wyatt Crockett and Stormers counterpart Steven Kitshoff.

However, the Bulls props have an unwanted tag and going up against the Sharks' seasoned trio - Jannie and Bismarck du Plessis, along with Tendai Mtawarira - is not going to get them any additional 'street credit' either.

There is no doubting the Sharks front row's pedigree - Bismarck du Plessis (57 Test caps), Jannie du Plessis (51 Tests) and Mtawarira (53 Tests) are far more experienced when compared to the seven international appearances by Greyling (three Tests) and Kruger (four Tests).

However, Ludeke feels the work done in the off season will ensure his team is prepared for the enormity of the challenge.

"They deserve the plaudits they get," Ludeke told this website, when asked about his team's perceived weakness in the front row.

"That's a front row that proved time and again, both in Super Rugby and at Test level, what they are capable of.

"However, it is important for us to focus on our own strengths."

The Bulls mentor admitted scrums are a "very important" facet of the game.

"We pride ourselves on having great aspects of our game.

"The scrum is an area where we were under pressure in a few games last year, [but] we have worked very hard on that in the off-season."

Ludeke believes the Bulls have grown and made significant progress in that area in the past two to three months.

"We worked on being technically more accurate and scum as a unit," he told this website, adding: "We are confident that we'll be able to set a solid platform [in the scrums] at the weekend.

"It has to be solid for 80 minutes, not just one or two scrums."

By Jan de Koning

Brumbies vs Blues
sast: 08h05 | local: 17h05

  • 6 | 8
LIVE
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 30 April 2017
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Fri, 05 May 2017
Hurricanes v Stormers 07h35 Westpac Stadium
Cheetahs v Highlanders 17h00 Bloemfontein
Sat, 06 May 2017
Bristol v Newcastle Falcons 22h00 Ashton Gate
Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers 22h00 Sixways
Northampton Saints v Harlequins 22h00 Franklin's Gardens
Wasps v Saracens 22h00 Ricoh Arena
Glasgow Warriors v Edinburgh 22h00 Scotstoun Stadium
Dragons v Cardiff Blues 22h00 Rodney Parade
Zebre v Treviso 22h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Scarlets v Ospreys 22h00 Parc y Scarlets
Munster v Connacht 22h00 Thomond Park
Ulster v Leinster 22h00 Kingspan Stadium
Gloucester v Exeter Chiefs 22h00 Kingsholm
Sale Sharks v Bath 22h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Rebels v Lions 05h00 Melbourne
Chiefs v Reds 07h35 New Plymouth
Waratahs v Blues 09h45 Allianz Park
Sharks v Force 13h05 Kings Park, Durban
Bulls v Crusaders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Jaguares v Sunwolves 21h40 Buenos Aires
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 17
Waratahs 9 3 0 6 13
Reds 9 2 0 7 11
Force 8 2 0 6 9
Rebels 8 1 1 6 7
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 9 9 0 0 41
Chiefs 9 8 0 1 37
Hurricanes 8 7 0 1 33
Highlanders 9 6 0 3 28
Blues 8 3 0 5 17
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 9 6 0 3 26
Bulls 8 3 0 5 14
Cheetahs 9 2 0 7 10
Sunwolves 9 1 0 8 6
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 9 8 0 1 37
Sharks 9 6 1 2 28
Jaguares 9 4 0 5 20
Kings 9 3 0 6 15