Bulls warned suc­cess in WP clash is crit­i­cal for fu­ture

● Coach Hu­man chooses Ivan van Zyl to add ex­pe­ri­ence to young side

Weekend Post (South Africa) - - Sport - Khanyiso Tshwaku

Blue Bulls coach Pote Hu­man said ex­pe­ri­ence was the fac­tor that made him choose Ivan van Zyl ahead of Em­brose Papier for Satur­day’s Cur­rie Cup clash against Western Province.

For all his Bok ex­pe­ri­ence‚ Papier has yet to fea­ture in the Cur­rie Cup and will be mak­ing his de­but when he comes off the bench.

Van Zyl‚ who is also a capped Bok‚ has 22 Cur­rie Cup matches. The Blue Bulls have to beat Western Province at Lof­tus Vers­feld to en­sure they qual­ify for next week’s semi­fi­nals.

“Ivan’s ex­pe­ri­ence and with this young team‚ he’s what I think we need. Em­brose will make a huge im­pact when he comes off the bench‚” Hu­man said.

“Rassie didn’t call me so I made my own call for this game and it’s just the ex­pe­ri­ence mat­ter that counts here. That’s made me go with Ivan.”

While the Bulls have the ben­e­fit of the fi­nal round-robin game with their 17 log points‚ they have to look at the Pu­mas and Lions game to see where they will travel to for a play­off game.

They will also have to pray Gri­quas do a num­ber on the Sharks (21) in Kim­berly but Western Province are not only un­beaten‚ their rugby has been un­com­pro­mis­ing.

While the Bulls‚ like most of the other teams‚ have the ben­e­fit of their re­turn­ing Spring­boks‚ Western Province have a stronger con­tin­gent.

How­ever‚ Hu­man hoped the play­ers un­der­stood what it meant to play for the Bulls against Western Province in what is known as the North/South derby.

“I told them if you’re not mo­ti­vated to play against West- ern Province at Lof­tus Vers­feld‚ then you don’t be­long here.

“It’s a big one for us and de­pend­ing on what hap­pens in the other games‚ it could be a must-win for us‚” Hu­man said.

“The Bok play­ers are very pos­i­tive and they want to play. They want some game time and none of them has a lot of it.

“Em­brose only had six or seven min­utes last week. They’re ex­cited and they lift the spirit of the team.”

Tight­head prop Wilco Louw will play his 50th match for Western Province in the NorthSouth derby.

Louw is one of four play­ers who have re­turned from the Spring­bok squad to take their place in the start­ing XV for the fi­nal league fix­ture of the Cur­rie Cup.

He is joined in the Western Province team by flank Sikhum­buzo Not­she, fly­half Damian Willemse and cen­tre Ruhan Nel.

Hav­ing al­ready se­cured a home semi­fi­nal at New­lands next week, Western Province will be look­ing to seal top spot in the stand­ings by con­tin­u­ing their un­beaten run in the Cur­rie Cup this sea­son.

In the front row, Louw starts along­side hooker Scarra Ntubeni and prop Ali Ver­maak, with skip­per Chris van Zyl and JD Schick­er­ling be­ing the lock pair­ing.

Not­she is at No 8 and will be flanked by Kobus van Dyk and Ernst van Rhyn in the loose trio.

Scrumhalf Her­schel Jan­tjies will form an all-new half­back pair­ing with Willemse, while Dan du Plessis makes his first start of the sea­son in mid­field along­side Nel.

The out­side back com­bi­na­tion of Dil­lyn Leyds at full­back and wings Sergeal Petersen and SP Marais re­mains un­changed.

Western Province head coach John Dob­son said his team were ex­pect­ing a typ­i­cally tough ex­am­i­na­tion at Lof­tus Vers­feld.

“The Blue Bulls will ob­vi­ously be highly mo­ti­vated for this match, which should pro­vide us with the sort of chal­lenge we need ahead of the play­offs.

“We have an ex­tremely ex­cit­ing team and we are all look­ing for­ward to putting our plans into ac­tion at Lof­tus Vers­feld,” he said.

Teams

Blue Bulls: 15 Di­van Ros­souw‚ 14 Jamba Ulengo‚ 13 Johnny Kotze‚ 12 Franco Naude‚ 11 Jade Stigh­ling‚ 10 Manie Lib­bok‚ 9 Ivan van Zyl‚ 8 Hanro Lieben­berg (cap­tain)‚ 7 Marco van Staden‚ 6 Ruan Steenkamp‚ 5 Eli Sny­man‚ 4 Hen­dre Stassen‚ 3 Trevor Nyakane‚ 2 Jaco Vis­agie‚ 1 Matthys Bas­son. Re­place­ments: 16 Edgar Marut­lulle‚ 17 Dayan van der Westhuizen‚ 18 Ruan Nortje‚ 19 Nic de Jager‚ 20 Em­brose Papier‚ 21 Ti­nus de Beer‚ 22 Dy­lan Sage. DHL Western Province: 15 Dil­lyn Leyds, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Ruhan Nel, 12 Dan du Plessis, 11 SP Marais, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Her­schel Jan­tjies, 8 Sikhum­buzo Not­she, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Kobus van Dyk, 5 JD Schick­er­ling, 4 Chris van Zyl (cap­tain), 3 Wilco Louw (50th DHL WP cap), 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Ali Ver­maak.

Re­place­ments: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Neeth­ling Fouche, 19 Sal­maan Mo­erat, 20 Jaco Coet­zee, 21 Paul de Wet, 22 Josh Stander. Ref­eree: Egon Sec­onds As­sis­tant ref­er­ees: Jaco Pre­to­rius‚ Ed­uan Nel

TMO: Lesego Le­goete

Pho­to­graph: GOR­DON ARONS/GALLO IMAGES

OLD HAND: Ivan van Zyl of the Vo­da­com Blue Bulls clears the base dur­ing the Cur­rie Cup match be­tween the Blue Bulls and Golden Lions at Lof­tus Vers­feld on Septem­ber

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