The Citizen (KZN)

Top of the table URC shootout

- Ross Roche

The top two teams on the United Rugby Championsh­ip (URC) log, the Bulls and Leinster, are set to go head-to-head in what should be a thrilling encounter at the RDS Arena in Dublin on Friday night.

It will be the fourth meeting between the two sides in the URC, with the Bulls having won twice and Leinster triumphed once.

It will also be the third time the teams clash in Dublin, after Leinster beat them 31-3 in their first-ever match in the competitio­n back in 2021, before the Bulls stunned them 27-26 in the semifinals, and ended up as runners-up in their first URC campaign.

Last season Leinster sent a second-string team on their tour of South Africa and were duly destroyed 62-7 in a one-sided thrashing at Loftus.

However this time round a full strength Leinster side featuring a host of Irish internatio­nals, still buzzing after clinching their second straight Six Nations title, should be waiting for the Bulls in Dublin.

It is set up to be a classic clash between the two in-form teams in the URC this season and should the Bulls win they could put themselves in a great position to finish top of the log, while a win for Leinster would see them pull further away.

“I know its going to be a great Test match for us and a great test to see how good we (really) are,” said Bulls Director of Rugby Jake White (below) ahead of the match.

The Bulls head into the game off a tough encounter against the Dragons in Wales, where the last move of the game secured a bonus point 31-7 win, to keep them in second place on the log.

“They were really good at trying to spoil everything. We couldn’t really get much momentum. They stopped our maul, they got in amongst us at the breakdown and at scrum time they were clever in getting the ball out quickly,” explained White.

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