It is a 'patience' game at Newlands
SUPER RUGBY SPOTLIGHT: There will be many battles across the park in the big north-south derby at Newlands on Saturday, perhaps none more intriguing than scrumhalf.
It is truly a battle of the bantams – World Cup-winning scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies (Stormers) against his two scrumhalf rivals from the Bulls, Ivan van Zyl and Embrose Papier (both who played for the Boks in 2018).
While Van Zyl is looking forward to facing off against the new darling of Newlands, Jantjies, he said the focus is on the team performance – rather than personal battles.
“He [Jantjies] is the in-form scrumhalf in South Africa and is playing very good rugby,” Van Zyl said.
“It is an opportunity for us [Van Zyl and Papier], but more importantly it is a massive game for the [Bulls] team.
“We need the ‘W’ [win] before we go into the bye week,” the No.9 added.
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The Bulls got their campaign off to a rocky start, going down 15-23 to the Sharks in Durban in Round One last week.
In contrast, the Stormers recorded an impressive 27-0 win over the Hurricanes.
Van Zyl spoke about the mistakes they made against the Sharks, who showed more patience on the day.
“We know what we need to improve on, going down to Cape Town,” the Bulls No.9 said.
Asked about the Stormers’ impressive start and the history between the two teams, he said both teams will always be up for it in the big north-south derby.
“They are exceptionally good at Newlands,”Van Zyl said, adding: “They are a quality team with many World Cup-winning Springboks, who all have great momentum and confidence.
“We know what to expect and what we need to do down there.
“The Sharks won the patience game, by pinning us back in our own half.
“That is a big focus for the Stormers as well.
“They don’t lay any rugby in their own half. They are really focussed on territory as well.
“You need to be in the right areas to score points, so it is definitely a focal point for us.”
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