Bulls add Bok beef for Sharks showdown
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Bulls Director of Rugby Jake White has added some extra Springbok beef to his pack for the Super Rugby Unlocked Round Three encounter with the Sharks.
The Bulls host the Sharks at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
Marcel van der Merwe will get his first start since he rejoined the Bulls from France earlier this year.
Van der Merwe replaces Bok Trevor Nyakane in the starting lineup, with Nyakane dropping to the bench.
White has tinkered with his matchday squad, most notably amongst the backs, that will front up against the Durbanites.
Youngster David Kriel shifts to fullback in place of the injured of Gio Aplon.
Springbok Travis Ismaiel will take over from Kriel on the right wing, while BlitzBok Kurt-Lee Arendse will also get his first opportunity in the Super Rugby Unlocked competition – after showcasing his silky skills against the same opposition in the SuperFan Saturday pre-season outing last month.
There is also a new centre combination – as Springbok Cornal Hendricks shifts back to inside centre, while BlitzBok Stedman Gans will man the outside centre channel.
The final change in the backline sees Ivan van Zyl and Embrose Papier swapping places, with the former shifting to the bench.
The forwards remain relatively unchanged – with Elrigh Louw handed his first start at blindside flank.
Arno Botha will provide cover off the bench.
(Team listed below video … )
Bulls: 15 David Kriel, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Stedman Gans, 12 Cornal Hendricks, 11 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Duane Vermeulen (captain), 7 Elrigh Louw, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Jason Jenkins, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Joe van Zyl, 17 Gerhard Steenekamp, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 Sintu Manjezi, 20 Arno Botha, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Chris Smith, 23 Marco Jansen van Vuren.
Date: Saturday, October 24
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 19.00 (17.00 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant referees: Marius van der Westhuizen, Paul Mente
TMO: AJ Jacobs