Bulls name Pollard as 'late replacement'

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:21
Large handre pollard bulls looks 800

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: The Blue Bulls have been forced into making a replacement to their team, with Springbok flyhalf Handré Pollard cracking a spot on the replacement bench.

Coach John Mitchell initially made just a couple of changes to his team for the Currie Cup crunch mat against the Sharks in Durban on Saturday.

Johnny Kotze will start on the wing and Conraad van Vuuren at tighthead.

However, Manie Libbok was withdrawn from the squad on Thursday, due to an issue with his Appendix.

He was then replaced by Pollard.

Mitchell, with the official title of Executive of Rugby, initially declined to use Pollard and scrumhalf Rudy Paige - after they were released from Springbok duty this week.

The injury to Libbok opened the door for Pollard.

However, there is still no place for Paige, with fellow Bok Piet van Zyl on the bench.

The inclusion of Kotze is a first start in light blue for the former Western Province midfielder, after coming off the bench twice earlier in the competition.

Van Vuuren, who last started against the Pumas in Nelspruit in August, is the other change in the run-on team from last weekend.

Mitchell, with the official title of Executive of Rugby, also opted for Ulrich Beyers on the bench - with the utility back due for a first appearance in this year's competition.

The team will again be captained by Burger Odendaal.

Blue Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Duncan Matthews, 13 Burger Odendaal (captain), 12 John Jackson, 11 Johnny Kotze, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Jano Venter, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Nic de Jager, 5 Aston Fortuin, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Conraad van Vuuren, 2 Edgar Marutlulle, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Johan Grobbelaar, 17 Matthys Basson, 18 Tim Agaba, 19 Marco van Staden, 20 Piet van Zyl, 21 Handré Pollard, 22 Ulrich Beyers.

Date: Saturday, September 23
Venue: Kings Park, Durban
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 GMT)
Referee: AJ Jacobs
Assistant referees: Ruhan Meiring, Rodney Boneparte
TMO: Christie du Preez

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 22 December 2017
Worcester Warriors v London Irish 19h45 Sixways
Sat, 23 December 2017
Treviso v Zebre 14h00 Stadio Monigo
Newcastle Falcons v Harlequins 15h00 Kingston Park
Northampton Saints v Exeter Chiefs 15h00 Franklin's Gardens
Sale Sharks v Bath 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Wasps v Gloucester 15h00 Ricoh Arena
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 17h10 BT Murrayfield
Connacht v Ulster 19h35 Sportsground
Sun, 24 December 2017
Leicester Tigers v Saracens 15h00 Welford Road
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 12 10 0 2 47
Western Province 12 7 0 5 37
Golden Lions 12 6 0 6 35
Blue Bulls 12 5 0 7 32
Free State Cheetahs 12 6 0 6 31
Pumas 12 4 0 8 27
Griquas 12 4 0 8 26