United Rugby Championship

Bulls president shrugs off criticism over Stormers banter video: 'It really was just for hype'

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Willem Strauss (Gallo Images)
Willem Strauss (Gallo Images)

Bulls president Willem Strauss has, justifiably and typically jovially, shrugged off criticism over the franchise's distinctly light-hearted banter video released before last weekend's United Rugby Championship derby against the Stormers.

The outcry over the video, which went viral last week, was slammed from various quarters as Bulls impetuosity that backfired as well as providing "unnecessary" extra motivation for the Capetonians.

Regardless of one's view, the Bulls lost 26-30 in the dying moments of the clash at Loftus.

READ | Dobson credits 'Banter Bulls' video for firing Stormers up to derby win

"The video was agreed to in advance," Strauss wrote in a broadcast message on social media on Tuesday.

"The main [objective] was to create a hype around the traditional North-South derby, [to] get people talking about rugby (which happened a long time ago) and create excitement for the game."

The video was indeed fun, one where fictional "recovering Stormers fans" decided to support the Bulls.

Following the victory, Stormers coach John Dobson made it perfectly clear that he hardly saw the video in a negative light though he would've been foolish not to use it to further pump up his charges.

"I was grateful the video was doing the rounds and we played it in the team room (before the game)," he said.

"I didn't speak to the team and I hope there will be Stormers fans recovering from hangovers.

"However, anything that creates interest in rugby, I’m in for and it did helped create some interest. There was fun involved, but it help our players a fair bit."

Strauss added that any lingering negative sentiment was probably down to the post being misunderstood.

"All of (the video's objectives) were achieved," he wrote.

"Now that we lost a match in the last minute, it seems to be an issue for some people."

The Bulls travel to Ellis Park desperate for a win against the Lions as they are stuck in 15th position on the URC log with just one win from six. 

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