Bulls hoping to recreate Currie Cup history

2012-10-17 14:58

Blue Bulls coach Pine Pienaar believes that his team can overcome the Sharks when the teams face off in their Currie Cup semifinal on Saturday.

“I believe in my players and I believe in management and every person can be special,” he said.

10 years ago the Bulls also scraped into a Currie Cup final.

That year, they beat the Sharks in Durban in a semifinal clash that paved the way for a golden era, which began with a 31-7 final win against the Lions at Coca-Cola Park.

Having survived relegation by the skin of their teeth, Pienaar knows how close his young side is to the cusp of repeating history, but said it is not weighing on them.

“It’s 10 years ago and I thought about it and I think there is a bunch of youngsters coming through that make me excited for the future.”

With his returning Springboks having a big influence in last week’s crushing 50-29 win over the Golden Lions, Pienaar chose to stick with the same unit.

Pienaar hopes their calming influence will come to the fore in the heat of a knockout match, saying that he hoped the experience gained during the test match period will come in handy.

“They have been in these situations before, and currently the team is looking towards them for direction, with the captain Dewald Potgieter, to be the leaders of the team,” he said.

“The youngsters have to feed from that. They have done well to put us in this position but I am looking towards those senior players to make a step up and lead us out.”

Having not won a Currie Cup match in Durban in six years could be a burden the team finds too heavy to carry. Potgieter has been part of Super Rugby sides that have won at Kings Park, but it is the duck that he hopes can be broken. However, it will have to be done in a knockout match.

“We’ve had a couple of tough games that, if we hadn’t won, we would have been out of the competition. Every week has been a final for us,” he said.

Blue Bulls team:
15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Francois Venter, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Arno Botha, 7 Jacques Potgieter, 6 Dewald Potgieter (captain), 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 Morné Mellett
Substitutes: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 19 CJ Stander, 20 Francois Hougaard, 21 Louis Fouchè, 22 Dean Greyling

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