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Blue Bulls

FULL-TIME
18     23

Western Province

Currie Cup | Pretoria
17:10 (GMT) | 16-10-2015
  • 81
Join us again for the other semi-final between the Golden Lions and the Free State Cheetahs and quarter final World Cup action.
  • 80
Bulls come away with it and gain good meters before WP infringe outside own 22. The Bulls take a quick tap but possession is turned over at the ruck and WP put it into touch to end the game and secure their 2015 Currie Cup Final spot
  • 78
Jamba Ulengo gets Province fans on the edge of their seats with a threateningly strong carry down the touch line. He is taken to ground and Bulls will have a scrum in mid field
  • 75
The Bulls now answer with three points as Schoeman kicks the penalty over
  • 72
Kurt Coleman adds two more points with the conversion
  • 70
WP take the ball up again and get into Bulls 22. Quick hands by the visitors sets Jano Vermaak up for the TRY!
  • 68
The line out goes the way of the Bulls as WP infringe again. Schoeman takes a free kick and Du Preez boots the ball out of WP's in-goal area
  • 66
Province set up a driving maul just outside Bulls' 22 and the forwards do well to get over the advantage line. WP hold onto the ball on the ground and Schoeman clears to give the Bulla the throw-in on Bulls 10
  • 59
The home side on the attack into Province territory but Tian Schoeman knocks on and the visitors will have the put-in at the scrum in mid field. The ball is turned over and Province infringe. The Bulls opt for points but Schoeman kicks it just short and the score remains static
  • 57
Schoeman sets up to take a penalty and boots it over from an angle to add three more the Bulls' tally
  • 53
Du Preez adds the extras
  • 51
Province answer in stunning fashion with a TRY! Kolbe picks up a grubber just inside Bulls' 22 and snipes down the touch line for the first try of the match
  • 47
Province in the wrong on the ground the Bulls will go for points. Schoeman boots over beautifully to put the Bulls in the lead
  • 46
A scoring opportunity for Province goes to waste as Senatla fails to capatalise on a grubber in Bulls' 22. Play goes back to mid field and WP do well to regain sion
  • 46
A scoring opportunity for Province goes to waste as Senatla fails to capatalise on a grubber in Bulls' 22. Play goes back to mid field and WP do ell to retain possession
  • 42
Province on the attack but a botched pass gives the Bulls possession. The ball is turned over again and Province have the put-in at the scrum in mid field
  • 41
Du Preez gets the second half underway with a deep kick into Bulls half

Half Time

  • 40
Province on the attack and the ball is turned over. Schoeman relieves his side of some pressure as he clears to get them out of the danger zone before we go into HALF-TIME
  • 38
Province have a 5m line out and set up a few quick phases and after a lengthy TMO referral, Schoeman boots the ball down field before the kick is returned by Kolbe
  • 36
Province have an attacking scrum on Bulls' 22 and the ball is played wide to Leyds but he is taken down. Kolbe now gets a run in but he is taken into touch
  • 33
The Bulls lose the ball forward and Province have a scrum in own half. The ball is turned over and the Bulls opt for points. Schoeman fails to get it over
  • 29
The home team's discipline letting them down and Du Preez sets up to take the three pointer. He gets the score board moving to level the score
  • 28
Sikhumbuzo Notshe nears the try line is shoulder charged into touch. The ref awards only a penalty and WP take a line out on the 5
  • 26
The Bulls answer with three points as Schoeman boots the ball over to stretch their lead again
  • 24
Du Preez will take the penalty kick and he makes no mistake to add three more
  • 23
The Bulls are down to 14 men as Pierre Schoeman is sin binned for the tackle on Kolbe
  • 22
A maul is formed and the Bulls collapse it. Province have another attacking line out on the 5m line and Kolbe puts in a threatening run in the Bulls' red zone before he is taken down with a high tackle
  • 19
Another less-than-great set piece in midfield and Du Preez finds touch. Western Province will have the throw-in on Bulls' 10
  • 16
Province have the put-in on the half way mark and they win a poor scrum. They gain a few meters before the ball is intercepted and the Bulls start a promising attack
  • 13
Western Province enjoying more possession and territory thus far and Du Preez sets up to take a chance at points. He gets it over to narrow the gap
  • 11
The Bulls come away with the ball and the visitors are penalised on the ground. Schoeman takes a shot to double the lead and he gets it over
  • 9
Bulls have an attacking scrum on own 10 and the ball is spread to Jamba Ulengo who sprints down the touch line but the ball goes loose after he is taken to ground. Bulls will have an attacking scrum in opposition half
  • 7
He misses an easy kick and the score board remains in favour of the Bulls
  • 5
Province with the throw-in on the 10m line and WP keep distribution short and quick before the Bulls infringe. Robert du Preez will go for the three-pointer
  • 3
Province set up a few good phases after an attacking line out on the half way mark and the ball is turned over. Schoeman with a poor kick gives the Bulls a line out on own 22
  • 2
Schoeman sets up to take an early penalty kick and boots it over to give the home side an early 3-0 lead
  • 1
Tian Schoeman kicks the game off with a high one that is well claimed by the Province defenders
  • -5
Both teams getting ready to go onto the field now..
  • -10
The Bulls, who finished second on the log, will host their first Currie Cup semi since 2008.This will mark the third time that the two great north-south rivals meet this season, with a home victory to each team thus far.
  • -20
Welcome to Loftus Versveld where we get ready for the first Currie Cup semi-final showdown between Western Province and the Blue Bulls!
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Blue Bulls
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Western Province
START LINE UP
  • 15 Warrick Gelant
  • 14 Travis Ismaiel
  • 13 Dries Swanepoel
  • 12 Burger Odendaal
  • 11 Jamba Ulengo
  • 10 Tian Schoeman
  • 9 Francois Hougaard
  • 8 Arno Botha
  • 7 Pieter Labuschagne
  • 6 Deon Stegmann
  • 5 Marvin Orie
  • 4 Jacques du Plessis
  • 3 Marcel van der Merwe
  • 2 Bandise Maku
  • 1 Pierre Schoeman
RESERVES
  • 22 William Small-Smith
  • 21 Louis Fouché
  • 20 Ivan van Zyl
  • 19 Jason Jenkins
  • 18 Rudolf Snyman
  • 17 Werner Kruger
  • 16 Corniel Els
START LINE UP
  • 15 Cheslin Kolbe
  • 14 Dillyn Leyds
  • 13 Johnny Kotze
  • 12 Juan de Jongh
  • 11 Seabelo Senatla
  • 10 Robert du Preez
  • 9 Nic Groom
  • 8 Nizaam Carr
  • 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe
  • 6 Rynhardt Elstadt
  • 5 Ruan Botha
  • 4 Jean Kleyn
  • 3 Wilco Louw
  • 2 Bongi Mbonambi
  • 1 Steven Kitshoff
RESERVES
  • 22 Huw Jones
  • 21 Kurt Coleman
  • 20 Jano Vermaak
  • 19 Jurie van Vuuren
  • 18 Chris van Zyl
  • 17 Oliver Kebble
  • 16 Michael Willemse
Mc article dries swanepoel blue bulls 800

Preview: Blue Bulls v Wesern Province

Thu, 15 Oct 2015 21:46

Defending champions Western Province will travel to Pretoria for their Currie Cup semifinal clash on Friday against the Blue Bulls at Loftus Versfeld.

The Bulls, who finished second on the log, will host their first Currie Cup Semifinal since 2008.

The clash in Pretoria will mark the third time that the two great north-south rivals meet this season, with a home victory to each team thus far.

Province triumphed over their old rivals in last season's semifinal in Cape town, and the men from Pretoria will be hoping to return the favour this time around.

Province eventually went on to lift the coveted Currie Cup trophy in front of their home crowd, after former coach Allister Coetzee’s charges edged the Golden Lions 19-16 in the 2014 Final.

Province coach John Dobson will be looking at certain areas of the game where they fell short at Loftus Versfeld earlier in the season, especially  focusing on the restarts.

"It [restarts] cost us 18 or 19 points at Loftus and I think about 21 points at Ellis Park," said Dobson.

"We are having more restarts in some games - considerably more than scrums - we have tweeked our plans a bit this week, in terms of who is receiving and how we are returning it.

The coach also feels that his side didn't do enough to deserve a home semifinal, however he does feel that they have enough ability to achieve the away victory.

"The Bulls deserve to be hosting the semifinal," Dobson added.

"It's tricky because when you get to the pressure side of the playoffs, your natural instinct is to worry about where you are on the field, and that's the debate they are probably having in Pretoria.

"I can't tell you which way they are going to go but it's not quite as cavalier as it was earlier in the season.

"We want to get the ball through the phases and we have to be clever about when and how we kick - if we are going to kick an unstructured kick and hope away, we are going to be under pressure from their back three.

"Our plan will be to try and kick in a structured fashion so that we are able to work really hard on our chasing lines to make sure we are claiming the territory game."

Blue Bulls coach Nollis Marais has named Jacques du Plessis at lock.

Du Plessis was a late withdrawal to the team that edged the Pumas 25-24 in Nelspruit last weekend, but he is ready to reclaim his regular No.4 spot in the team.

Rudolph Snyman, who replaced Du Plessis for the Pumas match, moves back to the bench as an impact player, but his replacement in Nelspruit, Jason Jenkins, retains his spot on the bench.

Jenkins will take over from Ruan Steenkamp as the fourth loose forward as Marais opted for more bulk on the bench.

Province were boosted by the return of several fit-again regulars.

Fullback Cheslin Kolbe, wing Seabelo Senatla, centre Johnny Kotze, flank Rynhardt Elstadt, lock Ruan Botha and hooker Bongi Mbonambi all return to the starting XV this week.

The return of the physical Elstadt especially is a major boost for Province as he missed the last four matches with a thigh problem.

Captain Juan de Jongh will lead the defending champions into battle and will pair up with Johnny Kotze in midfield, with Senatla, Dillyn Leyds and Kolbe forming a dangerous back three.

Nic Groom and Robert du Preez will start at scrumhalf and flyhalf respectively, with scrumhalf Jano Vermaak back on the bench after missing their last two matches with a groin strain.

Prop Oliver Kebble has shaken off an ankle injury and will start on the bench, where he is joined by lock Chris van Zyl.

Players to watch:

For Blue Bulls: Dries Swanepoel has been a revelation this season. He will certainly test the centre combination of Johnny Kotze and Juan de Jongh. Jamba Ulengo has arguably been the best finisher in the competition this season. If the Bulls forwards are able to dominate then Province are going to struggle to keep the wing at bay.

For Western Province: If the Blue Bulls adopt an expansive style of play then it will bring Cheslin Kolbe into the game. He has the ability to make the Bulls pay for any mistakes with his devastatinig runs from deep in his own half. Dillyn Leyds has done very well while covering for Kolbe and the ability of those two players to catch the Bulls on the break will be somewhat of a concern for Bulls coach Nollis Marais.

Head to head: Flyhalf Tian Schoeman was sensational for the Bulls in the first half of the season. However he has failed to maintain that momentum and he will be facing another inexperienced youngster in the form of Robert du Preez. The match may very well be decided by which of the two flyhalves are able to show the most composure.

Recent results:
2015: Western Province won 29-14, Cape Town
2015: Blue Bulls won 47-29, Pretoria
2014: Western Province won 31-23, Cape Town (Currie Cup semifinal)
2014: Western Province won 23-18, Pretoria
2014: Western Province won 41-17, Cape Town

Prediction: Western Province are a dangerous side and are capable of beating anyone on their day, but the Blue Bulls have been collossal at Loftus Versfeld this season. This match will be very tight, especially in the first half but if the Bulls can regain the form that they displayed for most of the season they might just have enough to edge out the men from Cape Town.

Teams:

Blue Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Arno Botha, 7 Pieter Labuschagne (captain), 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Jacques du Plessis, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements:  16 Corniel Els, 17 Werner Kruger, 18 RG Snyman, 19 Jason Jenkins, 20 Ivan van Zyl, 21 Louis Fouché, 22 William Small-Smith.

Western Province: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Dillyn Leyds, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Juan de Jongh (captain), 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Michael Willemse, 17 Oliver Kebble, 18 Chris van Zyl, 19 Jurie van Vuuren, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Kurt Coleman, 22 Huw Jones.

Date: Friday, October 16
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 19.00 (17.00 GMT)
Expected Weather: Partly cloudy with a slight chance of rain, high of 16, wind 15 kph
Referee: Lesego Legoete
Assistant referees: Stuart Berry, Quinton Immelman
TMO: Christie du Preez

Source: Rugby365.com and @SaRugby

Mc article bulls v wp 800

Province edge Loftus derby

Fri, 16 Oct 2015 18:58

MATCH REPORT: Western Province kept the defence of their Currie Cup title alive with a hard-earned 23-18 win over the Blue Bulls on Friday.

Outscoring the Bulls by two tries to nil in a bruising encounter in Pretoria the defending champions advanced to the Final - where they will meet the winner of Saturday's encounter between the Golden Lions and Free State Cheetahs.

There is a special type of agony in the tension of a knock-out match, especially a semifinal. You could see it in the body language of the players and you could hear it in the voices of the 25 000 spectators, and you could see and hear the crescendo as the match played to its end, the release of its end as it snapped the tension, either in the soggy fatigue of defeat or the energetic  elation of victory.

Play this game again next week, and the result could be different as they are two well-matched teams. The difference was that Western Province took their chances and scored two tries while the Blue Bulls did not really have chances to score tries - luck, the bounce of the ball, their own errors or the Western Province defence  thwarting them. And they did not have a Cheslin Kolbe or a Steven Kitshoff.

The Blue Bulls played with the wind on the blustery evening after a day of heat and they were immediately on the attack. Nick Groom aimed to clear from a ruck but his kick was charged down and Western Province were penalised at the following ruck. Tian Schoeman kicked the first of his six penalty goals. 3-0 after a minute.

In all Schoeman kicked six penalties out of eight attempts. Western Province were penalised 14 times, 10 of them at rucks or related to rucks. In the second half the penalty count was 8-1 against them. That added to their burden of defence.

Western Province had a chance to level scores when Jamba Ulenga was penalised at a tackle but Rob du Preez's kick bounced away off the upright. It was the only one of his five kicks at goal that he missed.  

The Blue Bulls worked an overlap for Ulenga who ran and chipped. Then Western Province were again penalised at a tackle. 6-0 after 12 minutes.

Three minutes later Du Preez made it 6-3.

Western Province used the maul exceptionally well. They marched downfield and Lappies Labuschagne was penalised. They kicked out for a five-metre line-out but the throw-in was over all the heads and the Blue Bulls won the ball.

When Cheslin Kolbe ran in counterattacked he was tackled high by Pierre Schoeman's swinging arm. The prop was sent to the sin bin for this. Not much damage was done in his absence, for when he returned the score was 9-9, as first Du Preez, then Schoeman and then Du Preez again goaled penalties.

Western Province had attacking moments as when Kolbe was tackled out near the corner by combined efforts of Travis Ismaiel and Burger Odendaal. Western Province later attacked from a line-out and were not far from the line and had advantage in their favour but Rynhardt Elstadt was penalised for charging, shoulder first, into Marvin Orie when the ball was on its way to the Western Province backs.

Nizaam Carr had a burst and, isolated, grubbered ahead but knocked on as he dived to secure the ball.

Half-time broke at 9-all.

Early in the second half Western Province knocked on and the Blue Bulls accepted the ball and Marcel van der Merwe burst downfield, tackled from behind by Groom. But Western Province were penalised and Schoeman made it 12-9 after 49 minutes.

The Blue Bulls had the ball in midfield but at a tackle Steven Kitshoff bent over and won a turnover. Western Province went left and getting close to touch with Kolbe outside of him Johnny Kotze grubbered. Kolbe ran after the bouncing ball as Jamba Ulengo covered and reached out for the ball. Kolbe put out a right hand and snatched the ball away and raced away for a try, which Du Preez converted. Western Province led 16-12, the first time in 52 minutes that they had enjoyed the lead. It stayed theirs.

Schoeman reduced the lead to 16-15 after 56 minutes and the Blue Bulls had five-metre line-out. But Elstadt got up to win the line-out and Western Province survived. It was the Blue Bulls' best chance to score a try in the match.

The Blue Bulls' hands let them down and Western Province kicked down towards the touchline on their right. Ismaiel got the ball but stepped into touch. Kolbe took it off him threw in quickly to Sikhumbuzo Notshe who was well infield. Notshe, tackled by Odendaal, played the ball back to Kurt Coleman who immediately sent a long pass to Jano Vermaak who raced over for the try. Coleman converted to give Western Province an eight-point lead with 8 minutes to play.

The Blue Bulls were chasing the game and were about to kick out when Western Province were penalised but changed their mind and goaled instead, in the knowledge that they in any case needed two scores to surpass eight points. 23-18 with five minutes to go.

The Blue Bulls attacked with zest but not  finesse and the Western Province tackled immediately till Kitshoff won a turnover and the ball was given to Notshe who ran away with it and kicked it into the stand to bring on the final whistle

Man of the Match: We opted for Cheslin Kolbe. He was the spark without taking risks or being out of position. He kept Western Province going forward and, when all is said and done, he scored a try and set up the other.

Moment of the Match: When Cheslin Kobe scored Western Province's first try.

Villain of the Match: Nobody. In the heat of battle the players stayed players and gentlemen.

The scorers:

For the Blue Bulls:
Pens:
Schoeman 6

For Western Province:
Tries:
Kolbe, Vermaak
Cons: Du Preez 2
Pens: Du Preez 3

Yellow card: Pierre Schoeman (Blue Bulls, 23 - foul play, high tackle)

Teams:

Blue Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Arno Botha, 7 Pieter Labuschagne (captain), 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Jacques du Plessis, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Corniel Els, 17 Werner Kruger, 18 Rudolph Snyman, 19 Jason Jenkins, 20 Ivan van Zyl, 21 Louis Fouché, 22 William Small-Smith.

Western Province: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Dillyn Leyds, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Juan de Jongh (captain), 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Michael Willemse, 17 Oliver Kebble, 18 Chris van Zyl, 19 Jurie van Vuuren, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Kurt Coleman, 22 Huw Jones.

Referee: Lesego Legoete
Assistant referees: Stuart Berry, Quinton Immelman
TMO: Christie du Preez

 
TRIES
Cheslin Kolbe (51min) and Jano Vermaak (70min)
 
CONVERSIONS
Robert du Preez (53min) and Kurt Coleman (72min)
Tian Schoeman (2min), Tian Schoeman (11min), Tian Schoeman (26min), Tian Schoeman (47min), Tian Schoeman (57min), and Tian Schoeman (75min)
PENALTIES
Robert du Preez (13min), Robert du Preez (24min), and Robert du Preez (29min)
 
PENALTY TRIES
 
DROP GOALS
Pierre Schoeman (23min)
 
 
VENUE Pretoria
REFEREE Lesego Legoete