Smit gets starting role for Bulls

Tue, 13 Sep 2016 10:08
Large roelof smit smiling 800

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Flank Roelof Smit will make a first start for the Blue Bulls in the Currie Cup against Griquas at Loftus Versfeld on Friday.

Smit, who played off the bench against the Golden Lions and Pumas in the last two weeks, will pack down at the side of the scrum for this crucial clash in place of Ruan Steenkamp, who is out injured.

Blue Bulls coach Nollis Marais made two rotational changes in the pack as well. Jaco Visagie will start at hooker, swopping places with Bandise Maku, who moves to the bench, while Pierre Schoeman rotates with Lizo Gqoboka at loosehead.

The return to fitness of Jannes Kirsten and Jason Jenkins will see both playing off the bench. Kirsten fills the spot vacated by Smit and Jenkins replaces Irne Herbst on the bench. Amongst the backs replacements, Bjorn Basson is bracketed with Divan Rossouw, but will play if declared fit. 

The coach welcomes Smit as a starter. "Roelof has certainly added value coming off the bench, and although it is sad that Ruan Steenkamp misses out, I know Roelof will not disappoint."

Blue Bulls: 15 Ulrich Beyers, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Hanro Liebenberg (captain), 7 Nic de Jager, 6 Roelof Smit, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Rudolph Snyman,3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman. 
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Martin Dreyer, 18 Jason Jenkins, 19 Jannes Kirsten, 20 Andre Warner, 21 Joshua Stander, 22 Bjorn Basson/Divan Rossouw.

Date: Friday, September 16
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 19.00 (17.00 GMT)
Referee: Quinton Immelman
Assistant referees: Stephan Geldenhuys, Jaco Pretorius
TMO: Johan Greeff

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Fri, 30 September 2016
Golden Lions v Sharks 15h00 Johannesburg
EP Kings v Pumas 16h00 Nelspruit
Western Province v Boland 17h10 Cape Town
Dragons v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Rodney Parade
Connacht v Edinburgh 18h35 Sportsground
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Sat, 01 October 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Griquas 12h00 Bloemfontein
Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers 13h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
South Africa v Australia 15h05 Loftus Versfeld
Munster v Zebre 16h00 Thomond Park
Ulster v Ospreys 17h30 Kingspan Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Leinster 18h35 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Cardiff Blues v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Stadio Monigo
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Argentina v New Zealand 22h10 Ascoli Piceno
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Team P W D L Pts
Free State Cheetahs 7 7 0 0 34
Blue Bulls 8 6 0 2 30
Sharks 7 5 0 2 25
Western Province 7 4 0 3 23
Golden Lions 7 4 0 3 22
Griquas 7 4 0 3 20
Boland 7 2 0 5 9
Pumas 7 0 0 7 5
EP Kings 7 0 0 7 1