Hurricanes vs Bulls Super Rugby preview

Like the other two New Zealand based matches this weekend this match has been moved out of the big city and this will be held in Napier.


The Hurricanes and the Bulls have never played each other in Napier but when the two teams meet the Hurricanes score 28 points to the Bulls 25 on average.


In New Zealand however the Hurricanes score 23 points on average and the Bulls 22.


Opening Super Rugby tour matches have traditionally suited the Bulls as they depart South Africa for New Zealand or Australia.


The defending champions have won four of the last five opening games of their Australasian tours, only losing in 2008 to the Reds in Brisbane, by 40-8.


The Bulls have won 60 % of their matches this season with a record of five played and three won. You would not have believed it before the season but both of the Bulls losses have – now famously – been at home.


Having lost two home matches already the Bulls will be desperate to secure away wins which will be crucial for them.


Even more desperate though are the Hurricanes who have played five and lost four for a 20 % win percentage. Last week they looked like they were well on their way to their second victory and they severely lost their way.


The Bulls have won the last two matches between the teams but the Hurricanes have won three of the last five. Overall the Hurricanes and the Bulls have played each other 13 times and the Hurricanes have won 7 and lost six.


The teams have played each other six times in New Zealand with three a piece. There is not a lot of room between these teams.


When these teams last met the Bulls won by a point at Loftus.


The Bookies have given the Bulls a four point start – with an offer of Bet 10 and Get 20. The Bulls are not playing well and we think the Hurricanes will be too desperate to let this one slip by and Hurricanes should win by 3.


Last five results.
19 Mar 2010 Hurricanes v Bulls 18-19 Pretoria
20 Mar 2009 Hurricanes v Bulls 14-19 Wellington
12 Apr 2008 Hurricanes v Bulls 50-22 Pretoria
31 Mar 2007 Hurricanes v Bulls 17-9 Wellington
17 Mar 2006 Hurricanes v Bulls 26-23 Pretoria


Hurricanes overall record against the Bulls
Played 13 , Wins 7 , Losses 6, Draws 0


Match Officials.
Referee: Steve Walsh (Australia)
Assistant referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Television match official: Shane McDermott (New Zealand)


Teams


Hurricanes : 1. John Schwalger , 2. Andrew Hore (c) , 3. Neemia Tialata , 4. Jeremy Thrush , 5. Jason Eaton , 6. Jack Lam , 7. Serge Lilo , 8. Victor Vito , 9. Chris Eaton , 10. Daniel Kirkpatrick , 11. Hosea Gear , 12. Ma’a Nonu , 13. Conrad Smith , 14. Julian Savea , 15. Cory Jane


Reserves , 16. Dane Coles , 17. Michael Bent , 18. James Broadhurst , 19. Mark Reddish , 20. Tyson Keats , 21. Aaron Cruden , 22. Charlie Ngatai


Bulls : Zane Kirchner, Bjorn Basson, Jaco Pretorius, Wynand Olivier, Francois Hougaard, Morne Steyn, Fourie du Preez, Pierre Spies, Dewald Potgieter, Deon Stegmann, Victor Matfield (c), Bakkies Botha, Werner Kruger, Gary Botha, Dean Greyling.


Replacements: Chiliboy Ralepelle, Roussouw de Klerk, Flip van der Merwe, Derick Kuun, Francois Brummer, Gerhard van den Heever, Jaco van der Westhuyzen.

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