Marais shuns Dobbo's claims

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 09:01

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Blue Bulls coach Nollis Marais has responded to his counterpart John Dobson's mind games ahead of the rematch of last year's Currie Cup semifinal in Pretoria on Saturday.

Dobson labelled the Bulls as a one-dimensional kicking team as he is expecting the Pretoria side to go the conservative route and test his team under the high ball on Saturday.

"We are expecting it to rain contestables up there and we have been working on it for two weeks," Dobson said.

Marais countered by stating that his team have a balanced game plan and are currently the tournament's second-most try scorers - a fact which contradicts Dobson's views that the Bulls are going to put in many high kicks.

"He must know something that I don't because if you look at how we played the whole season, we had a good mixture of running rugby. We scored a lot of tries from our own 22 but Dobbo [John Dobson] can say whatever he wants," Marais said.

The last time the Bulls did battle with WP was during the first round and on that occasion, the Bulls outscored the Cape side six tries to four, en route to a 45-26 victory in Pretoria.

Marais explained that the Bulls are getting better at running the ball and attacking the space and pointed out that during that match, his side impressed with some sublime running rugby and were able to score four tries from inside their 22.

"We are still developing a different brand of rugby and I think the guys are getting better every week. We scored four tries from our own half [against them]," he added.

The Bulls come into the north-south derby refreshed and well prepared for the challenge, having had a three-week break since they ended off their round robin phase in style with a 48-26 victory over the Boland Cavaliers in Wellington at the end of September - their fourth win on the trot.

That victory ensured they finished the round-robin phase in second place with 30 points from eight matches played, which included six wins and two defeats.

Province have had a two-week lay-off since clinching a play-off spot and will be aiming for a repeat of last year's result, when they managed a 23-18 victory in Pretoria.

By Josh Isaacson

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