The Southern Kings will get to experience the effects of the Super Rugby travel factor first hand when they host the Bulls at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
The Kings only returned to Port Elizabeth late on Sunday evening after their
four-match Australasian tour, which finished with a draw against the Brumbies
in Canberra before they beat the Rebels in Melbourne.
A sold out Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium will await the Kings on Saturday, with
their regular captain and most experienced player, Luke Watson, also back after
missing the tour because of injury.
Returning from tour is not always easy. Last year, South Africa’s two
most successful Super Rugby teams, the Bulls and The Sharks,
both experienced this first hand by losing at home upon their arrival back from
In 2011, only the Bulls managed to win their first post-tour home match,
with The Sharks, Stormers and Cheetahs all losing their and the MTN
Lions getting a draw.
The Kings know they will have to be at their best to beat the three-time champions
in PE and thereby recording their first victory over a fellow South African
“This should be a hotly contested game and I am really looking forward
to it,” said Watson, who will be playing in his 84th Super Rugby
match, which includes 20 appearances for The Sharks and 62 for the Stormers,
whom he also captained.
The Bulls will be hoping to build on their win over the Cheetahs
last weekend – their first in more than a month.
“We had to work very hard for the win against the Cheetahs and we want
that momentum carried over into the Kings match,” said Bulls coach
“I am pleased with the way the combinations worked on the night and decided
to stick with that. We will need to be very structured and cohesive against
the Kings, who will be fired up and spurred on by a sell-out crowd. To have
an unchanged team will hopefully offset those early challenges.”
Bulls captain Pierre Spies said: “We had to dig deep and needed
all 22 in the squad to beat the Cheetahs, something that will work in our favour
when facing the Kings for the first time. We need to focus on our own game and
not allow the crowd to get into the match, so need to have a strong start and
keep up the effort.”
The Bulls announced a late change to their team. Dewald Potgieter was
forced to withdraw with a knee injury. Arno Botha will start against the Kings,
with Jacques Potgieter coming onto the bench.
have given the Kings an 11 point start for this Match – with an
offer of a FREE $150 BET. The Bulls will not have the travel
factor to deal with and they should be intimidated by the home crowd. The
Bulls should win by 8.
This Match will be shown on TV in NZ, Aus, SA and in the UK on Sky Sports 2
on the Red button
Average score: N/A
Last five results
Kings overall record against the Bulls
Match No.: 61.Kings v Bulls
Date : Saturday 20 April
Venue : Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
Kick Off local: 19:10
Referee: Francisco Pastrana
Assistant Ref 1:Ben Crouse
Assistant Ref 2:Christie du Preez
TMO : Johann Meuwesen
George Whitehead, Ronnie Cooke, Waylon Murray, Andries Strauss, Sergeal Petersen,
Demetri Catrakilis, Shaun Venter, Schalk Ferreira, Bandise Maku, Kevin Buys,
Cornell du Preez, Steven Sykes, David Bulbring, Wimpie van der Walt, Luke Watson
Replacements: Hannes Franklin, Grant Kemp, Rynier Barnardo, Jacques Engelbrecht,
Nicolas Vergallo, Marcello Sampson, Siviwe Soyizwapi.
Jürgen Visser , Akona Ndungane , JJ Engelbrecht , Jan Sefontein , Lionel
Mapoe , Morne Steyn , Jano Vermaak , Pierre Spies (c), Arno Botha , Deon Stegmann
Juandre Kruger Flip van der Merwe , Frik Kirsten , Chiliboy Ralepelle , Morne
Replacements: Callie Visagie , Werner Kruger, Paul Willemse, Jacques Potgieter
, Rudy Paige , Louis Fouche , Bjorn Basson.
Article source: http://www.rugbyweek.com/news/article.asp?id=38653