Force sink Bulls in tryless scrap

Sat, 26 Apr 2014 11:29
Large cowan tackles potgieter.jpg

The Force held on in wet conditions to secure a 15-9 victory over the Bulls in a scrappy and tryless match in Perth on Saturday.
 

The Force held on in wet conditions to secure a 15-9 victory over the Bulls in a scrappy and tryless match in Perth on Saturday.

The defeat means that the Bulls return home from their Australasian tour without a single win, whilst the Force move into second place in the Australian conference ahead of their bye next week.

The Bulls made a steady start to the game, patiently taking it through the phases from the first scrum, and they were eventually rewarded when Ben McCalman went off his feet at the breakdown and Jacques-Louis Potgieter was able to open the scoring with a penalty.

Both teams were keen to assert territorial dominance in the wet conditions, so there were plenty of high balls in the early exchanges as they both looked to force some mistakes.

The Bulls managed to hold on to the ball in opposition territory as they continued to call the early shots, and they were able to double their lead when Force flyhalf Sias Ebersohn strayed offside on defence.

They nearly extended that lead further when Potgieter had a crack at a drop-goal, but it hit the bar and the Force were able to scramble it away although they remained pinned in their own half thanks to some good tactical kicking from the Bulls.

The Force finally got off the mark after 25 minutes when Victor Matfield went off his feet at the breakdown and Ebersohn was able to slot the penalty to make it 6-3.

The kicking battle continued in the slippery conditions, and the Force were able to level the scores before long when Bulls prop Dean Greyling did not roll away in the tackle and they would take a 9-6 lead into half-time as Ebersohn slotted another penalty just before the break.

The home side continued their dominance after the break, with a few basic errors letting the Bulls down, and Ebersohn stepped up to slot his fourth penalty which took their lead out to 12-6.

The Bulls responded by tightening things up further as they worked their way into the Force 22 but their hopes of scoring the first try of the game were dashed by obstruction at the maul.

The Force had a fantastic opportunity of their soon afterwards when they won back a high kick on the Bulls' 22, but they too could not get over the line and had to settle for another Ebersohn penalty to take their lead to 15-6.

The visitors finally hit back with a penalty from replacement Handre Pollard after a powerful scrum and that seemed to spark the Bulls who stormed back into the Force 22 immediately.

The Force managed to hold out thanks to an illegal charge from Jacques du Plessis, and although the Bulls pushed hard in the final stages they could not find a way through as the Force held on for a gritty victory.

Man of the match: It was a big effort from the force pack, but our award goes to flyhalf Sias Ebersohn who controlled the game well with his boot and did not miss a kick off the tee.

The scorers:

For the Western Force:
Pens:
Ebersohn 5

For the Bulls:
Pens:
Potgieter 2, Pollard

Teams:

Western Force:
15 Jayden Hayward, 14 Dane Haylett-Petty, 13 Marcel Brache, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Sias Ebersohn, 9 Ian Prior, 8  Ben McCalman, 7 Matt Hodgson (captain), 6 Angus Cottrell, 5 Sam Wykes, 4 Adam Coleman, 3 Kieran Longbottom, 2 Nathan Charles, 1 Pek Cowan.
Replacements: 16 Heath Tessmann, 17 Tetera Faulkner, 18 Ollie Hoskins, 19 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 20 Brynard Stander, 21 Justin Turner, 22 Zack Holmes, 23 Chris Tuatara-Morrison.
 
Bulls: 15 Jurgen Visser, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 Johannes Engelbrecht, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Grant Hattingh, 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Jono Ross, 5 Victor Matfield (captain), 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Marcel van der Merwe, 18 Jacques Engelbrecht, 19 Wimpie van der Walt, 20 Rudy Paige, 21 Handré Pollard, 22 Ulrich Beyers, 23 Morné Mellet.
 
Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant referees: James Leckie (Australia) , Matt O'Brien (Australia)
TMO: Peter Marshall (Australia)

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Fri, 27 April 2018
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 18h45 Welford Road
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Kings v Cheetahs 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 14h00 Sandy Park
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 14h00 Sixways
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
Connacht v Leinster 14h05 Sportsground
Dragons v Scarlets 14h05 Rodney Parade
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Treviso v Zebre 16h00 Stadio Monigo
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 16h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Ulster 16h35 Thomond Park
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Myreside
Sun, 29 April 2018
London Irish v Saracens 14h00 Madejski Stadium
Wasps v Northampton Saints 14h00 Ricoh Arena
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
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 8 5 1 2 24
Rebels 87 4 0 4 21
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 15
Reds 8 3 0 5 13
Sunwolves 8 0 0 8 2
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 6 0 2 29
Hurricanes 7 6 0 1 27
Chiefs 8 6 0 2 26
Highlanders 7 5 0 2 24
Blues 8 2 0 6 12
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 9 6 0 3 30
Bulls 8 4 0 4 19
Sharks 9 3 1 5 18
Jaguares 9 4 0 5 16
Stormers 9 3 0 6 14