Bulls make four changes for Cheetahs

Bulls coach Frans Ludeke has named a Super Rugby team with four changes for this weekend’s match against the Cheetahs at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday

The coach’s hand was forced through injury and the SARU rest agreement, which ruled all of Jan Serfontein, Handre Pollard, Deon Stegmann, Dean Greyling, Victor Matfield and Lappies Labuschagne out of contention for the final match of the tournament.

Matfield will be replaced by Grant Hattingh and Labuschagne by Arno Botha at flank, while Greyling’s place will be taken by Morne Mellett. Adriaan Strauss, who was rested last weekend against the Rebels, is back at hooker, with Callie Visagie moving to the bench.

Ludeke also called Nicolaas Janse van Rensburg and Roelof Smit into the squad again to cover for Deon Stegmann and Hattingh.

The backline remain unchanged from last week.

“We would like to finish the tournament with a strong performance. We did not reach all the targets we have set for ourselves as a team, but I am proud of the way we have played at times during the season. Unfortunately our away form again cost us,” Ludeke said.

Bulls captain Pierre Spies was adamant that they will deliver a good, final performance.

“The Cheetahs team will have nothing to lose and will certainly attack from all angles, but we are also very keen to end our season on a high.”

“We are back at Loftus Versfeld for a last time this season and would like to give the supporters something to cheer about. That said, there is no time for emotional goodbyes, as we will have to play for 80 minutes to make sure we get the right result.”

JJ Engelbrecht is only Bulls player in 2015 to start in the same position in all 16 matches. Francois Hougaard also started in all 16 matches, but played left and right wing.

Bulls

Jesse Kriel, Francois Hougaard, JJ Engelbrecht, Burger Odendaal, Travis Ismaiel, Jacques-Louis Potgieter, Rudy Paige , Pierre Spies ( c), Jacques du Plessis, Arno Botha, Grant Hattingh, Flip van der Merwe, Marcel van der Merwe, Adriaan Strauss, Morne Mellett.

Replacements: Callie Visagie, Trevor Nyakane, Nicolaas Janse van Rensburg, Roelof Smit, Bjorn Basson, Tian Schoeman, Jurgen Visser, Werner Kruger.

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