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The Blue Bulls were too strong for the Pumas as the Pretoria side ran out 41-14 victors in their Currie Cup clash at Mbombela Stadium, in Nelspruit, on Saturday evening.
The Bulls were workman-like in their performance as the Pumas tried to stay in touch going into the break at 24-9 down. After the interval, however, the Bulls were able to up their intensity while the home side struggled to stay in the contest.
The dominance of the Bulls was best demonstrated by outscoring the Pumas 6-1 in the try count.
Fullback Ulrich Beyers barged over the line for the Bulls first try of the evening, with number 10 Tian Schoeman nudging over the conversion to make it 7-0 inside the first 10 minutes.
The Pumas hit back immediately with a penalty from flyhalf Francois Brummer as the gap was reduced to four points.
Schoeman restored his side’s seven-point lead in the 21st minute with a penalty as the Bulls led 10-3.
Brummer added two more penalties in the next 12 minutes to draw within a point of the visitors.
The Bulls swiftly clicked into gear as they moved the ball out wide in a counter-attack move, and speedy wing Travis Ismaiel took a gap in the Pumas defence before darting over for the score. Schoeman added the extra two as the Bulls moved out to a 17-9 lead.
The Bulls were over for another try from the restart as Nic de Jager barged his way over after scrumhalf Piet Van Zyl had taken a quick penalty from five metres out. Schoeman made no mistake with the conversion to extend the advantage to 24-9 in favour of the men in blue.
The Bulls had their bonus-point try shortly after the restart as Hanro Liebenberg fell over the line as a driving maul gifted the visitors another five-pointer. Schoeman missed the conversion, but the Bulls had extended the lead to 29-9.
Jamba Ulengo finished off another flowing Bulls backline move as he scored in the corner for a 34-9 lead.
Ulengo made it two tries in the match as a tired Pumas defence could not catch the sprinting winger as he surged down the touchline before rounding off for the score. Replacement flyhalf Joshua Stander slotted the conversion to put the Bulls 41-9 ahead.
The Pumas picked up a consolation try as replacement Ruwellyn Isbell was able to dot down in the corner with just under 10 minutes remaining.
There would be no further change to the scoreboard as the Bulls ran out comfortable victors.
Final Score Bulls 41 (24) Pumas 14 (9)
Tries: Ulrich Beyers, Travis Ismaiel, Nic de Jager, Hanro Liebenberg, Jamba Ulengo (2).
Conversions: Tian Schoeman (3), Joshua Stander.
Try: Ruwellyn Isbell
Penalties: Francois Brummer (3)
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