Bulls treated unfairly by Currie Cup schedule?

Nollis Marais (Gallo Images)
Nollis Marais (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - When this Saturday's second Currie Cup semi-final takes place at Loftus, it will be the first match the Blue Bulls have played since September 23. 

They take on Western Province and are favourites on paper, but the Blue Bulls have waited three weeks for this fixture. 

They had a bye on the final weekend of regular season, but the real problem came a week later when the semi-finals had to be postponed by a weekend due to the All Blacks taking on the Springboks in Durban. 

Going into the final weekend the Sharks, now out of the competition, still had a mathematical chance of securing a home semi-final. 

With the Boks in Durban, hosting a Currie Cup semi and a massive Rugby Championship clash at Kings Park on the same weekend was simply not an option. 

As a result, the semi-finals were moved a week back.

Western Province coach John Dobson said this week that what has happened to the Bulls was not fair.

"I don't think I would have liked three weeks off. Two weeks is just enough," said Dobson.

"I think it's extraordinary for them that they're made to go through that.

"It's not really fair on them because somebody should have worked out before that the All Blacks were coming here and there was a Currie Cup semi-final. It's unlucky for the Bulls.

"I've got some sympathy for them but they may have done some wonderful team building stuff."

Saturday's match kicks off at 18:00.

Teams:

Blue Bulls

15 Ulrich Beyers, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Arno Botha (captain), 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Roelof Smit, 5 RG Snyman, 4 Marvin Orie, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Lizo Gqoboka

Substitutes: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Martin Dreyer, 18 Pierre Schoeman, 19 Jason Jenkins, 20 Hanro Liebenberg, 21 Ivan van Zyl, 22 Joshua Stander, 23 Bjorn Basson/Nic de Jager

Western Province

15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Werner Kok, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Huw Jones, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Kobus van Dyk, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Chris van Zyl (captain), 4 Jan de Klerk, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.

Substitutes: 16 Mike Willemse, 17 Alistair Vermaak, 18 JP Smith, 19 JD Schickerling, 20 Stefan Willemse, 21 Jano Vermaak, 22 Johnny Kotze, 23 Scott van Breda

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