VIDEO: Bulls take lead in SA race
SUPER RUGBY REPORT: The Bulls moved to the top of the South African conference with a bonus-point win over the Reds in Pretoria on Saturday.
The hosts outscored the visitors by five tries to two, for a 32-17 win in an entertaining affair.
The Bulls (on 23 points after eight games) overtook the Sharks (21 from eight) and Jaguares (19 from eight).
The win follows last week’s disappointing loss to the Jaguares, when they coughed up a 10-point lead in the last 10 minutes.
Lizo Gqoboka, Marco van Staden, Handré Pollard, Hanro Liebenberg and Jade Stighling all crossed for the Bulls.
Samu Kerevi scored twice in the second half for the beleaguered Reds – who are still to register back-to-back away wins outside Australia since 2013.
Pote Human’s side controlled the game from start to finish, dominating the set-pieces and tight phases.
Bryce Hegarty kicked an early penalty.
Moments later Johnny Kotze burst through, but was stopped just short. He off-loaded to Lizo Gqoboka for the opening try.
The second try came from a line-out, Marco van Staden getting an arm-chair ride at the rolling maul.
It allowed the Bulls a 13-3 lead at half-time.
Inside the opening minute after the break Handre Pollard powered through a high tackle and tumbled over to extend the lead.
Next Lukhan Salakaia-Loto broke the line and set up Samu Kerevi as the gap closed to 10-20.
The Bulls’ response was swift, Hanro Liebenberg and Pollard going over – 32-10.
There was enough time for Kerevi to score a consolation try.
Man of the match: Paul Schoeman was energetic and physical, also winning some turnovers. Handré Pollard pulled the strings in the backline. The busiest man in the game was the Bulls’ Springbok lock Rudolph Snyman, who put on display his full array of skills. He wins our award.
For the Bulls:
Tries: Gqoboka, Van Staden, Pollard, Liebenberg, Stighling
Cons: Pollard 2
For the Reds:
Tries: Kerevi 2
Cons: Hegarty 2
RECAP: Bulls v Reds
Did you miss any of the action? Recap all the drama here!
Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Johnny Kotze, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jade Stighling, 10 Handré Pollard (captain), 9 Ivan van Zyl, 8 Paul Schoeman, 7 Hanro Liebenberg, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Rudolph Snyman, 4 Jannes Kirsten, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Lizo Gqoboka.
Replacements: 16 Corniel Els, 17 Simphiwe Matanzima, 18 Wiehahn Herbst, 19 Thembelani Bholi, 20 Roelof Smit, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Manie Libbok, 23 Divan Rossouw.
Reds: 15 Hamish Stewart, 14 Jack Hardy, 13 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 12 Samu Kerevi (captain), 11 Aidan Toua, 10 Bryce Hegarty, 9 Tate McDermott, 8 Scott Higginbotham, 7 Liam Wright, 6 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 5 Harry Hockings, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Alex Mafi, 1 JP Smith.
Replacements: 16 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 17 Harry Hoopert, 18 Ruan Smith, 19 Angus Blyth, 20 Angus Scott-Young, 21 Moses Sorovi, 22 Duncan Paia’aua, 23 Jock Campbell.
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa), AJ Jacobs (South Africa)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)