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Bulls

FULL-TIME
17     13

Stormers

Super Rugby | Pretoria
17:10 (GMT) | 21-05-2016
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The referee calls for a penalty to the Bulls. He decides to end it instead. FILL TIME
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Scrum at the 10 of the Stormers
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The Stormers get a penalty after the scrum. They try to play it quick but the Bulls reform quickly. The referee calls for a knock-on by the Stormers
  • 77
The Bulls moving forward shortly after the scrum. The Bulls wit ha smart kick forward but just fall short in fornt of the try line. Scrum at the 5 of the Stormers
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The reset kick sees both team scramble to maintain possession during the last few minutes. Scrum at the half way for the Bulls
  • 75
Line-out to the Bulls. They move forward in the maul but the Stormers find their gorund. A seconfd maul catches the Stormers off guard and they are pressed back. The ball is moved forward the nsent back to Schoeman who goes for the drop goal and gets it
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The Bulls opt for the maul and they make a good few meters before sending the ball up field. Van Zyl with a cheeky kick forward and chases it himself but the referee blows for a penalty to the Bulls.
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The Bulls pushing the Stormers back in the scrum but the visitors escape with the ball. The ball is kicked forward into touch. Line-out for the hosts
  • 71
Scrum reset
  • 70
The hosts find possession after the line-out and move the ball down field but they lose it forward. Scrum at the 10 of the Stormers
  • 69
The restart kick is not too deep and du Plessis fails to celar as the ball rebounds off a Bulls player. The Stormers do manage to escape with a penalty and du Plessis clears into touch
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Du Plessis adds the extras
  • 67
The Stormers still in the 5 now. Kolbe looking to squeeze through a keyhole-sized gap. The ball is moved up field to de Allende who finds the gap and scores the TRY
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Line-out at the 5 of the Bulls. du Toit brings it down. The Stormers powering forward now inside the 5. Kebble looking to muscle through but not strong enough.
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Penalty to the Stormers after some back and forth attacking. Du Plessis kicks into touch at a good position
  • 64
The Stormers desperately trying to make their way forward but have no answer for the defence of the Bulls.
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The ball bounces into touch after a kick from Van Zyl. Penalty to the Stormers after the throw. Du Plessis kicks into touch. Another line-out ensues shortly after. The ball is moved up field to Kolbe
  • 61
The Stormers are driven back now in the 10th phase. de Allende passing one. The Bulls hold a solid line and the referee blows for a penalty to the Bulls to end the momentum
  • 60
The inside pass from Burger and the Stormers inside the 5 now. Carr tries to froce his way through but the muscle of the Bulls keeps him out.
  • 59
The kick forward by du Plessis is spotted by Marais. He kicks forward and du Plessis returns the favour. The Stormers making ground inside the Bulls' half. Du Plessis kick the ball into touch at the 5 of the Bulls
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Bulls trying to make a few meters with a maul after the throw. An error by van Zyl and the Stormers get a line-out at the 22. The Bulls get the ball and van Zyl clears
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Zas takes the ball down after the reset kick and passes one before going down. The Stormers assembling themselves for the attack and they move forward with intense resolve. Zas with a good carry down his left wing. The ball is tackled into touch in the hands of du Toit
  • 55
du Plessis debating with his team whether he should take the kick or not from the penalty. He opts for the possible 3 points from tricky angle. He fails to add the points
  • 53
Both teams playing quite aggressively, almost with intent to injure as the tugging and shoving continues away from the ball. Line-out for the Stormers and they make some ground with a maul. They send it to Burger who rushes into the opposition
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Penalty to the home team and Brummer opts for the penalty kick outisde the 10. The angle much better this time and he secures the 3 points
  • 50
Line-out at the 10 of the Stormers for the Bulls. The hosts move forward in the maul now. Brummer sends it up field to Kriel. The ball is moved down field after they realised no one is getting through on the wing. The referee blows for a penalty which halts the Bulls shift
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Bulls making some ground in the maul and then send it back. Bulls play with the advantage then get the penalty. Brummer kicks into touch again
  • 48
The referee blows fro offside shortly after the reset kick. Brummer kicks it into touch at the half way
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Brummer misses the conversion
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Scrum at the 22 of the Bulls now. Penalty to the Bulls and Brummer kicks it high. Kolbe brings it down and Serfontein with a good kick forward. The chase is there and van Zyl picks it up and throws himself over the line to score the TRY
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The clearance kick by Brummer rebounds off a Stormers player. The away side applying good pressure to the hosts. The referee blows his whistle for a penalty to the Bulls. Medical staff on the field now treating Burger
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The Bulls take the line-out but the turnover is there by the Stormers. The ball is played back and du Plessis looks for a cheeky kick into touch. The referee blows his whistle for a penalty
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Scrum at the 22 of the Stormers as Kolbe loses it forward. The scrum going better for both sides. The Bulls making some ground off the back of Jenkins. Penalty to the Stormers and du Plessis kicks into touch at the 10 of the Bulls
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The second half is underway; Brummers sends the ball far into the Stormers half

Half Time

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The Stormers find possession and clear to end the half. HALF TIME
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He is quickly surrounded and the turnover sees Bulls makes a swift counter attack. The ball is sent down their right wing to chase but Carr gets there first
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Line-out at the half way and Carr takes it down comfortably. They send it up field to Kolbe who finds some space
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KThe Bulls chase after the restart. The ball in mid field and Marais wit ha kick that goes really high and du Plessis makes contact in the air with Brummer. He appears to be down
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Du Plessis with the penalty kick now from a decent position. He fails to add the points.
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The Stormers in the own half and du Plessis clears. Marais plucks it out of the air and a ruck is formed around him. The Stormers ome away with the ball and find themselves in the 22 of the hosts. Du Plessis with a neat kick forward and Kolbe chases. The ball bounces favourably but his height works against him as the back line of the Bulls take the ball out of the air
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Kolisi making a few meters before the ball lands in the hands of Kebble. The turnover is there by the Bulls but they lose it again to de Allende. The referee blows shortly after for a penalty
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Du Plessis kicks forward for a kick-chase. The followup is there and the Stormers gain some territory. The Bulls in possession of the ball now at their own 22. The ball is lost forward and the referee blows for a penalty. Scrum inside the 10
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Brummer steps up and assumes his position of choice. He fails to add the extras this time around
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The scrum reset as is the norm in this fixture. Scrum reset again. Both teams with a poor display of binding at the scrum. The Bulls walk away with a penalty to this time
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Botha snatches the ball out from the scrum and makes a few meters with one hand out streched. The ball is moved up field with the Bulls and the crowd behind them but they lose it forward. Scrum at the 22 of the Stormers
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The Stormers being held by the Bulls. Zas gets possession and tries a break down field but the defence is there. The referee calls for a scrum to the Bulls
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Stormers with the tighthead and they play it out and down field. The referee blows to halt play again for a penalty to the Stormers. Du Plessis kicks into touch
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Scrum at the half way. Scrum reset
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Line-out at the half way adn the Bulls go for the maul. The referee stops play for a penalty to the Stormers.
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Line-out at their own 10. Etzebeth looking to power through but three players on him immediately. Du Toit enthusiastically running into traffic. The whistle sounds.
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The referee refers to TMo and calls for a foul commited earlier. The Stormers get a penalty instead and du Plessis kicks into touch
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The Bulls pushing forward past the 10 but lose it forward as well. Scrum at the 10 of the Stormers
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Penalty to the Bulls due to illegal binding in the front row. Brummer kicks into touch at the half way. The Bulls with some flashy passing as they make their way into the 10 of the away team
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Scrum reset
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Scrum at the 22 of the Bulls
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The visitors in the 22 in the 8th phase but the ball fumbled and lost forward
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The restart kick is deep and the Bulls waste no time clearing into touch around half way. Line-out won by the away side and they move forward with an advantage
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He finds the middle of the sticks again and the scores are level
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Both team clearing and the Stormers attempt to disrupt the ruck but the referee blows for a penalty to the Bulls. Brummer imitates his opposite number and steps up for the kick
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Scrum reset again. The Stormers props not binding properly. Groom slides it in and the Stormers make some good ground in their own half
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The Bulls with a good chase after the restart. They make some good ground but the referee spots a forward pass. Scrum at the 22 of the away side. Scrum reset
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He secures the points again making him two from two
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The referee blows for a penalty to the Stormers after the restart and du Plessis wastes no time stepping up to the plate. Kicking from just outside the 22
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Brummer eyes the posts and he too secures 3 points for his side
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van Zyl waiting but the referee blows for a penalty to the home side since the Stormers kept breaking down the scrum.
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Scrum reset again
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The ball contested strongly by both sides. Scrum straight after for the Bulls. Scrum reset
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The Stormers deep in their own half after the reset by the Bulls. The pressure is applied but du Plessis clears calmly. Line-out at the 22 of the Stormers now
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Du Plessis secures the first points of the game with the 3 points
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The Stormers find possession after the short kick and make their way closer to the 22 in the 8th phase. de Allende carrying forward a few meters. The referee blows for a penalty to the Stormers inside the 22. Du Plessis lines it up
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Ben O'Keeffe blows and the game is underway off the boot of du Plessis with a shirt kick
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The players exiting the tunnel now
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Etzebeth returning to the Stormers side after an injury while De Jong is out for the same reason
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The Bulls are unbeaten at their home ground this season
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The Stormers have won the past 5 games against the Bulls in this competition
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Welcome to Pretoria where the Bulls host the Stormers
Mc bulls logo 80x50
Bulls
Mc stormers logo 80x50
Stormers
START LINE UP
  • 1 Lizo Gqoboka
  • 2 Adriaan Strauss
  • 3 Marcel van der Merwe
  • 4 Jason Jenkins
  • 5 Rudolf Snyman
  • 6 Pieter Labuschagne
  • 7 Jannes Kirsten
  • 8 Arno Botha
  • 9 Piet van Zyl
  • 10 Francois Brummer
  • 11 Travis Ismaiel
  • 12 Jan Serfontein
  • 13 Jesse Kriel
  • 14 Jamba Ulengo
  • 15 SP Marais
RESERVES
  • 16 Jaco Visagie
  • 17 Trevor Nyakane
  • 18 Pierre Schoeman
  • 19 Grant Hattingh
  • 20 Deon Stegmann
  • 21 Rudi Paige
  • 22 Tian Schoeman
  • 23 Dries Swanepoel
START LINE UP
  • 1 Oliver Kebble
  • 2 Bongi Mbonambi
  • 3 Frans Malherbe
  • 4 Eben Etzebeth
  • 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit
  • 6 Nizaam Carr
  • 7 Siya Kolisi
  • 8 Schalk Burger
  • 9 Nic Groom
  • 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis
  • 11 Leolin Zas
  • 12 Damian de Allende
  • 13 John-Ben Kotze
  • 14 Kobus van Wyk
  • 15 Cheslin Kolbe
RESERVES
  • 16 Siyabonga Ntubeni
  • 17 Alistair Vermaak
  • 18 Vincent Koch
  • 19 Rynhardt Elstadt
  • 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe
  • 21 Louis Schrueder
  • 22 Brandon Thomson
  • 23 Huw Jones
Mc article loftus versfeld media briefing general2 800

S18 PREVIEW: ROUND 13, PART TWO

Fri, 20 May 2016 01:32

IN THE SPOTLIGHT. Jan de Koning looks at the last four matches in Part Two of Super Rugby's Round 13.

Let's start with the BIG match of the weekend, the north-south derby - the Bulls hosting the Stormers in Pretoria.

It is always a special occasion, even when one of the teams is in a slump.

The Stormers lead the Bulls by a mere three points at the top of the Africa One conference, with both sides having won six of 10 games and the difference on the table coming from the Stormers' ability to regularly pick up a losing bonus point.

The Stormers will have to make do without co-captain Juan de Jongh, who has a hamstring injury.

However, the silver lining for coach Robbie Fleck is the news that Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth is ready to play again.

The Blues will be looking to bounce back from last week's hammering at the hands of the Lions when they stop off in Perth - on their way home to Auckland - to play a Western Force team fresh from a win in their last outing (40-22 over the Sunwolves) with a bye sandwiched in between.

The Lions, leaders in Africa Two conference, will fancy their chances when they play a depleted Jaguares side - who have both captain Agustin Creevy and back row forward Leonardo Senatore suspended.

The Sharks, who lie second in that conference, play the bottom-placed Southern Kings.

And then, of course, it is the Loftus showdown - the Bulls against the Stormers.

Saturday, May 21:

The Blues are desperate to end their three-match road-trip with a win, on a winning fashion note - especially after last week's embarrassing loss to the Lions.

However, they face a Force team coming off a bye and with a morale-boosting win over the Sunwolves the week before.

Force coach Michael Foley said the team is well rested and looking to carry their form from Tokyo back to Perth on Saturday.

"We used the first few days of the bye week to recover and the back end of the week to reinforce some of the positives from the Sunwolves match," he said.

Foley believes his team found the formula for success that had eluded them earlier in the season - when they lost seven matches on the trot.

"In Tokyo, we played the type of rugby we've been working towards," the coach said.

"The biggest difference came as a result of us focusing on enjoying the game and attacking every contest without fear.

"Without doubt, there have been times where our disappointment as a result of not getting things 'right' held us back, but I believe the boys now have not only a clear picture of the type of game we're chasing, but also the attitude that allows us to enjoy games while we continue to improve."

Blues captain James Parsons said the embarrassment of their 5-43 loss to the Lions would be a key tool in turning the result around.

"There's a natural edge obviously," he said of the team's build-up towards the Perth outing.

Parsons, and assistant coach Glenn Moore, re-emphasised the point that the week's build-up to the game had been the best of the season.

Parson said they had plans in place to cover any eventuality in terms of the weather - it rained throughout the game in Johannesburg.

"We certainly didn't institute the plans we wanted and I suppose there was that disappointment, but flip that on its head it was a great learning curve for us, we're a young group and I think we can feed off that experience," he said.

Recent results:
2015: Blues won 41-24, Auckland
2014: Blues won 40-14, Perth
2012: Blues won 32-9, Auckland
2011: Force and Blues drew 22-all, Perth
2010: Blues won 38-17, Auckland
2009: Blues won 25-19, Perth

Prediction: The Blues are undefeated in their last six games against the Force and have lost to the Western Australian team only once in Super Rugby history (2008). The Force have lost their last four games at home when hosting a team from New Zealand, scoring an average of just 12 points per game in that span and conceding 31. The Blues have won only one of their last 14 games away from home, though they are yet to lose consecutive away games this season. Ihaia West has kicked 21 successful penalty goals so far this season, the most of any player, and has missed eight further attempts. Matt Hodgson has made 145 tackles so far this season and is five shy of becoming the first player to make 150, he currently sits 26 tackles above second ranked Michael Hooper. It is difficult to fathom who has been more dire - the Force or Blues. The home ground factor will give the Force hope, but the Blues should win by 10 to 15 points.

Teams:

Western Force: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Marcel Brache, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Luke Morahan, 10 Ian Prior, 9 Alby Mathewson, 8 Ben McCalman, 7 Matt Hodgson (captain), 6 Brynard Stander, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Ross Haylett-Petty, 3 Guy Millar, 2 Harry Scoble, 1 Francois Van Wyk.
Replacements: 16 Anaru Rang, 17 Pek Cowan, 18 Tetera Faulkner, 19 Rory Walton, 20 Angus Cottrell, 21 Ryan Louwrens, 22 Luke Burton, 23 Semisi Masirewa.

Blues: 15 Melani Nanai, 14 Matt Duffie, 13 George Moala, 12 Piers Francis, 11 Tevita Li, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Billy Guyton, 8 Steven Luatua, 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Josh Bekhuis, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Sam Prattley.
Replacements: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Hoani Matenga, 20 Kara Pryor, 21 Bryn Hall, 22 Matt McGahan, 23 Male Sa'u.

Referee: Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Rohan Hoffmann (Australia), Jordan Way (Australia)
TMO: Peter Marshall (Australia)

The Lions will be looking to consolidate their position at the top of the African conference.

However, they have to overcome a stiff challenge from a much-improved Jaguares team - which went down fighting when they lost 22-25 to the Sharks last week.

Lions coach Johan Ackermann warned his team against complacency - which cost his team dearly against the Hurricanes earlier in the season.

Ackerman spoke about the quality remaining in the team, despite the ban of two key players - captain Agustin Creevy (one-week ban for dangerous tackle) and No.8 Leonardo Senatore (10-week ban for biting).

"You would be a fool if you take this Argentinean side lightly," Ackermann said.

"They have a large number of their World Cup players in the squad and you don't play for your national team unless you are a very good player."

Ackermann said he felt the Jaguares were unlucky not to get a win in some of the games.

"They were never really humiliated in any games," the Lions mentor said, adding: "There were one or two games where they lost with more than seven points, but they were always in it.

"If you look at their No.9 and No.10 combination, the locks and the front rows, it is all guys we will see soon in the international season.

"It is a quality side and we have to play to our highest standards."

Jaguares No.8 Facundo Isa - in for the suspended Senatore - said Johannesburg's high altitude of 1,700 will be a factor.

"It is a topic which we have discussed and hopefully we will all adapt," Isa said.

The loose forward pointed to the Lions' record of seven wins from 10 starts and their 43-5 humiliation of the Blues last week as indicators that it will be a tough day at the park.

"Our analysis made it clear they like to play from everywhere and are very strong ball carriers.

"In many ways they are a team like Sharks. We know that when we get opportunities we must make them count and score."

He felt they have shown this season - and particularly against the Sharks last week - showed the Jaguares can compete with the best.

Previous results:
These teams have not met before.

Prediction: This Jaguares' only away win so far in Super Rugby came in Round One when they visited South Africa to play the Cheetahs. Each of the Lions' last 14 matches have seen the full-time result mirror the half-time results. The Lions have won only one of their last four games against teams from outside of South Africa, though that win came in their most recent such fixture in Round 12. The Lions have won nine turnovers per game this season, the most of any team and 2.3 more per game than the Jaguares who average the third fewest. Elton Jantjies has kicked 44 goals for the season, the most of any player, and is one of only five players (all of whom are South African based) to have kicked a goal from beyond the halfway line. It will be tough and the Jaguares will push the Lions all the way, but in the end the home team will win by eight points.

Teams:

Lions: 15 Jaco van der Walt, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Howard Mnisi , 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Lourens Erasmus, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Corne Fourie.
Replacements: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Jacques van Rooyen, 19 Ruan Ackermann, 20 Warwick Tecklenburg, 21 Ross Cronje, 22 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 23 Sylvian Mahuza

Jaguares: 15 Joaquín Tuculet, 14 Emiliano Boffelli, 13 Juan Martin Hernández, 12 Matías Orlando, 11 Lucas González Amorosino, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Martín Landajo (captain), 8 Facundo Isa, 7 Tomás Lezana, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Tomás Lavanini, 4 Matías Alemanno, 3 Ramiro Herrera, 2 Julián Montoya, 1 Santiago García Botta.
Replacements: 16 Facundo Bosch, 17 Facundo Gigena, 18 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 19 Guido Petti, 20 Javier Ortega Desio, 21 Gonzalo Bertranou, 22 Santiago González Iglesias, 23 Ramiro Moyano.

Referee: Stuart Berry (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)

The Sharks - just two points behind - will look to keep the pressure up on the Lions in the race for Africa Two conference honours.

With Springbok flyhalf Patrick Lambie now back to full fitness and starting at flyhalf, the KwaZulu-Natalians will be looking to continue their recent resurgence - with three wins in their last four matches.

The Kings have some serious firepower back and Sharks Director of Rugby Gary Gold struck a very cautionary note for his team this week.

"We had work to do after our performance against the Jaguares [a fortuitous 25-22 win last week], but we are happy with the character shown to dig deep and find a way to win in tough conditions," Gold said.

Gold dismissed the notion that the Kings - with just one win from 10 starts - is a guaranteed win for his side.

"Every week you need to be at your best in this competition and our match against the Kings is no exception," Gold said.

"They have been working hard and improving each week and they will be ready for the fight this weekend.

"We as a group are very determined to improve each week and it is critically important for us to continue doing so."

Kings coach Deon Davids spoke about the need to focus on getting the basics right and making the right decisions throughout the game.

The Kings have been inconsistent all season, but were bolstered by the return of captain Steven Sykes and veteran prop Schalk Ferreira, two of the most experienced players.

However, Davids said it would require a team effort, rather than individual brilliance to beat the Sharks.

"I think all the players have the ability to make an impact," Davids said.

Previous results:
2016: Sharks 43-8, Port Elizabeth
2013: Sharks won 58-13, Durban
2013: Sharks won 21-12, Port Elizabeth

Prediction: This will be only the fourth clash between these teams; the Sharks have won all three previous meetings by a combined 122-33 score line. The Sharks have won three and drawn one of their last five games against South African opponents, though they've not scored more than 18 points in any of their last three such fixtures. The Kings have lost their last three games on the trot, conceding 141 points in the process. The Sharks have been forced to make 127 tackles per game so far this season, the second most of any team in the competition, yet they still boast the third best tackle success of any side (86 percent). The Sharks have averaged the fewest carries of any team this season (85.2 per game), however the Kings have gained the fewest metres on average (324). The Sharks will win, it is just a matter of the margin. Don't be surprised in the winning margin exceeds 50 points.

Teams:

Sharks: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie (captain), 9 Michael Claassens, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Keegan Daniel, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 1 Dale Chadwick.
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Lubabalo Mtyanda, 20 Lubabalo Mtembu, 21 Stefan Ungerer, 22 Garth April, 23 Odwa Ndungane.

Southern Kings: 15 Jurgen Visser, 14 Lukhanyo Am, 13 JP du Plessis, 12 Shane Gates, 11 Luzuko Vulindlu, 10 Louis Fouche, 9 Ntando Kebe, 8 Aidon Davis, 7 Thembelani Bholi, 6 Stefan Willemse, 5 Schalk Oelofse, 4 Steven Sykes (captain), 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Martin Ferreira , 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Justin Ackerman, 18 Tom Botha, 19 John-Charles Astle, 20 Jacques Engelbrecht, 21 Kevin Luiters, 22 Elgar Watts, 23 Leighton Eksteen.

Referee: Quinton Immelman
Assistant referees: Rodney Bonaparte, Archie Sehlako
TMO: Marius Jonker

The Bulls and Stormers are both coming off disappointing trips abroad - the Bulls having lost their last two matches in Australia and the Stormers playing to a 17-all draw against the lowly Sunwolves.

The Bulls are hoping to avoid a record fifth straight loss against their fierce southern rivals, the Stormers.

Not that matches between these two are even in need of additions motivation - but with just three points separating them it is a conference decider.

Tradition dictates that it will be another bruising derby.

Bulls coach Nollis Marais was quick to accept the underdog for a game where there is never any love lost.

"They're travelling up north with a point to prove after their draw [against the Sunwolves] in Singapore last week," Marais said.

"When we met in Cape Town earlier in the competition, they used their bench to good effect, so we have to be prepared for that.

"A match between the two sides is always very tough and tense and I expect the same on Saturday."

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck all week spoke of his team's desire to set the record straight after last week's dire effort .

"Week-in and week-out we want to be in a position where we have to compete and be at our best," Fleck said, adding: "We certainly weren't against the Sunwolves and we need to cop that, understand it and learn from it.

"It is now a real situation where every single game counts."

Fleck knows that his side are in for a serious test against a competitive Bulls side.

"Our backs are against the wall, but so are theirs, they are coming off two losses and are playing in front of their home fans, so it is going to be a helluva game and we are excited about making amends for last week," Fleck said.

"The players know that we have to make a big step up in terms of our performance, and we have worked incredibly hard this week to ensure that we are at our best"

Bulls captain Adriaan Strauss said he expected a typical arm-wrestle.

"We always have massive clashes with the Stormers," Strauss said.

"It is one of those matches everybody wants to play and to be part of.

"This team have a great opportunity to deliver a proper performances in front of our fans against a formidable foe. We will be ready," Strauss added.

Recent results:
2016: Stormers won 33-9, Cape Town
2015: Stormers won 15-13, Cape Town
2015: Stormers won 29-17, Pretoria
2014: Stormers won 16-0, Cape Town
2014: Bulls won 28-12, Pretoria
2013: Stormers won 30-13, Cape Town
2013: Bulls won 25-17, Pretoria

Prediction: The Stormers have won their last four games against the Bulls; a fifth straight win would be their longest victory run in the history of this fixture. The Bulls are the only team in the competition who are still undefeated at home. The Bulls have scored only 14 points in their last two Super Rugby games, never before in the history of the competition have the Bulls been restricted to single figures in three consecutive games. The Bulls have conceded just 6.8 clean breaks and 6.5 offloads per game, the fewest of any team in the competition in both categories, while they have also missed the fewest tackles per game this season (13.7). No player has stolen more line-outs than Stormers' pair Eben Etzebeth (nine) and Pieter-Steph du Toit (seven) so far this season. The Stormers, based on their superior set pieces, will ease to a win of 15 points or more.

Teams:

Bulls: 15 SP Marais, 14 Jamba Ulengo, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Travis Ismaiel, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Arno Botha, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Pieter Labuschagne , 5 Rudolph Snyman, 4 Jason Jenkins, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Lizo Gqoboka.
Replacements: 16 Jaco Visagie, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Pierre Schoeman, 19 Grant Hattingh, 20 Deon Stegmann, 21 Rudy Paige, 22 Tian Schoeman, 23 Dries Swanepoel.

Stormers: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Schalk Burger, 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Nizaam Carr, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe (captain), 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Oliver Kebble.
Replacements: 16 Siyabonga Ntubeni, 17 Alistair Vermaak, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Rynhardt Elstadt, 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Brandon Thomson, 23 Huw Jones.

Referee: Ben O'Keeffe
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson, AJ Jacobs
TMO: Johan Greeff

Compiled by Jan de Koning
@King365ed
@rugby365com

* Statistical information provided by Opta Sports

Piet van Zyl (46min)
TRIES
Damian de Allende (67min)
 
CONVERSIONS
Jean-Luc du Plessis (68min)
Francois Brummer (7min), Francois Brummer (13min), and Francois Brummer (51min)
PENALTIES
Jean-Luc du Plessis (2min) and Jean-Luc du Plessis (9min)
 
PENALTY TRIES
Tian Schoeman (75min)
DROP GOALS
 
 
 
VENUE Pretoria
REFEREE Ben O'Keeffe (New Zealand)