Bulls need to be accurate against Cheetahs – Ludeke

2013-04-10 16:01

The Cheetahs have turned heads with their five-match winning streak but Loftus Versfeld has been the savannah that has found them wanting, with the Bulls stampeding them on several occasions.

The two sides clash again on Saturday evening.

Bulls coach Frans Ludeke, always tacit in his praise, said the Cheetahs are not the South African Super Rugby lightweights they used to be.

“They have five wins from five and that definitely builds confidence. They are playing very well and they are dangerous from broken play,” Ludeke said.

“We need to be accurate and discipline will be a vital point for us. The opportunities will be there, but we need to be accurate to finish them.”

Fresh from a bye after a disastrous Australasian tour that saw the Bulls win only one from four, there are two changes from the team that lost to the Brumbies.

Lock Flip van der Merwe and Akona Ndungane make their way back into the starting line-up after suffering injuries on tour.

They replace Paul Willemse, who drops to the bench, and Jurgen Visser, who moves to fullback in Zane Kirchner’s place.

The surprise inclusion is that of scrum half Rudy Paige, who could make his debut from the bench. Ludeke’s start was well deserved after excellent Currie Cup and Vodacom Cup form.

“He’s a fantastic player and was unfortunate not to get called up on tour as he struggled with a hamstring injury,” Ludeke said.

A hallmark of the Cheetahs this season has been their ability to protect the ball on the ground.

While the Bulls have been solid in the breakdown, it is an area where they have been routinely bested.

Captain Pierre Spies said nullifying the Heinrich Brussouw/Lappies Labuschagne threat is down to the Bulls loose trio and not up to one individual.

“It’s not so much what they are doing, but the team we’ve chosen is fit for the weekend and Dewald and Deon have done very well,” said Spies.

“They are very experienced and we are going to need them this weekend. The Cheetahs have a quality back?row but we are focusing on what we want to achieve.”

Teams:

Bulls: 15 Jürgen Visser, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Lionel Mapoe, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Pierre Spies (captain), 7 Dewald Potgieter, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Frik Kirsten, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Morné Mellet

Substitutes: 16 Callie Visagie, 17 Werner Kruger, 18 Paul Willemse, 19 Arno Botha, 20 Rudy Paige, 21 Louis Fouchè, 22 Ulrich Beyers

Cheetahs: TBA

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