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Carr leads Bulls, Goosen gets pivotal role

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: The Bulls have made a few changes to their personnel in their matchday 23 that will duel French side, Lyon on Friday in Round Four of the 2022/23 Champions Cup.

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Nizaam Carr will lead the side as Simphiwe Matanzima, Bismarck Du Plessis and Francois Klopper form a new front-row combination to that which duelled the Chiefs in Pretoria.

Ruan Vermaak will pair up with Janko Swanepoel in the second row, whilst Marco van Staden and Cyle Brink will have Carr for company in the back row.

At the back: Embrose Papier(scrumhalf), Johan Goosen (flyhalf) and Cornal Hendricks (inside centre) come into the starting XV with Zak Burger and Chris Smith set to start off the bench, alongside Johann Grobbelaar, Gerard Steenekamp, Mornay Smith, Elrigh Louw, Lionel Mapoe and club captain, Ruan Nortje.

The Bulls are on a quest for a third victory of their debut campaign, hoping to emulate their triumphant 42-36 victory on home soil in the opening round of the competition. Their hosts, are still without a win in this campaign and will surely look to correct this in the final pool fixture, making this an appetising clash for rugby fans across the two hemispheres.

In the pool, only five sides have already confirmed their qualification for the Round of 16; Leinster, Sharks, Saracens, Exeter Chief and Edinburgh with three spots up for grabs going into the final round of fixtures.

The Bulls travel to Lyon sitting sixth, five points adrift the pool topping Leinster (who are on 15 points) and seven points ahead of their opponents, who lie in tenth place. Only a point separates the Pretoria outfit from Edinburgh and Exeter, with Harlequins in seventh place (seven points) and Racing 92 in eighth (five points) ahead of this weekend’s matches.

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Bulls: 15 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 14 Canan Moodie, 13 Wandisile Simelane, 12 Cornal Hendricks, 11 David Kriel, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Nizaam Carr (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Janko Swanepoel, 4 Ruan Vermaak, 3 Francois Klopper, 2 Bismarck Du Plessis, 1 Simphiwe Matanzima.
Replacements: 16 Johann Grobbelaar, 17 Gerhard Steenekamp, 18 Mornay Smith, 19 Ruan Nortje, 20 Elrigh Louw, 21 Zak Burger, 22 Chris Smith, 23 Lionel Mapoe.

Date: Friday, January 20
Venue: Matmut Stadium de Gerland, Lyon
Kick-off: 21.00 (22.00 SA time; 20.00 GMT)
Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)
Assistant Referees: Andrew Jackson (England) & Wayne Falla (England)
TMO: Stuart Terheege (England)

CC Pool A after Round 3

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