Planet Rugby

Bulls batter poor Sharks

21st May 2011 13:51

Share:

Morne Steyn Bulls v Sharks 2011

Steyn: Twenty-two points

An immense defensive showing from the Bulls saw the men from Pretoria claim an invaluable 32-23 win over the Sharks.

In what was a scrappy encounter, the difference between the two teams was clear to see; where the Sharks bumbled forward the Bulls were clinical, making use of whatever possession came their way.

One of the Sharks' most effective tactics thus far this season has been using Willem Alberts and since his return from injury, Jean Deysel, as battering rams. On Saturday the Bulls rendered this largely ineffective, with dedicated, accurate defence putting a stop to the duo's surges before they started.

The Sharks' line-outs were an unadulterated mess, with Bismarck du Plessis missing his jumpers time after time. With the all-Springbok front row failing to dominate both in the tight and the loose, the Sharks were unable to build a suitable platform from which the backs could attack.

Hamstrung by persistent handling errors the home side couldn't string the phases together and the Bulls made them pay for their lack of control with the boot of Morne Steyn punishing the Sharks on countless occasions.

Francois Hougaard crossed for the first of the Bulls' two tries in the eighth minute, and it came as a result of an error at line-out time from the Sharks. Inside his own 22, Du Plessis couldn't find his jumper, the loose ball was snapped up by Steyn and recycled to Hougaard, who shrugged off the attentions of Alberts to dot down under the posts.

Missed tackles again cost the home side in the fifteenth minute when Dean Greyling busted through the Sharks midfield before Bakkies Botha dived over from the base of the resulting ruck. It was ugly rugby from the men in black but the Bulls deserved credit for taking their chances.

Patrick Lambie kicked over a penalty on either side of the two tries but with Steyn adding a penalty of his own as well as drop goal, the Bulls headed into the break with a well deserved seventeen-point lead.

As was the case in the first forty, it was Steyn who opened the scoring with an early penalty after the Sharks were penalised at scrum time.

But it was the Sharks who began to show glimpses of class and they were rewarded in the 54th minute, with Bismarck du Plessis diving over the whitewash after McLeod had gone close after taking a quick tap.

The Sharks began to control the game more but were their own worst enemy, with unforced errors preventing them from making the most of their chances.

With Steyn adding two penalties in the final quarter to Lambie's one, the Bulls maintained a healthy advantage. As such, an Adrian Jacobs try six minutes from time was not enough to give the visitors too much to worry about in the final stages.

Lambie missed a kickable penalty after the hooter to ensure the Sharks would not be picking up a late bonus point, capping off what was a miserable night for the men from Durban. Conversely, the Bulls are looking stronger and stronger ever week and are at last starting to look like the defending Super Rugby champions.

The scorers:

For the Sharks:
Tries: B du Plessis, Jacobs
Con: Lambie 2
Pen: Lambie 3

For the Bulls:
Tries: Hougaard, B Botha
Con: Steyn 2
Pen:Steyn 5
Drop: Steyn

Sharks: 15 Louis Ludik, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Stefan Terblanche (c), 12 Meyer Bosman, 11 JP Pietersen, 10 Patrick Lambie, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Willem Alberts, 7 Jean Deysel, 6 Jacques Botes, 5 Alistair Hargreaves, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Eugene van Staden,18 Gerhard Mostert, 19 Marcell Coetzee, 20 Conrad Hoffmann, 21 Adrian Jacobs, 22 Lwazi Mvovo.

Bulls: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Bjorn Basson, 13 Jaco Pretorius, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Francois Hougaard, 10 Mornť Steyn, 9 Fourie du Preez, 8 Pierre Spies, 7 Dewald Potgieter, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Victor Matfield (c), 4 Bakkies Botha, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Gary Botha, 17 Rossouw de Klerk, 18 Flip van der Merwe, 19 Danie Rossouw, 20 Derick KuŁn, 21 Francois Brummer, 22 Gerhard van den Heever.

Referee: Bryce Lawrence (New Zealand)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Super Rugby
Saturday , August 2
Waratahs vs Crusaders19:40
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Super Rugby
Saturday , July 26
Crusaders 38 - 6 SharksCrusaders vs Sharks Report
Waratahs 26 - 8 BrumbiesWaratahs vs Brumbies Report
Saturday , July 19
Brumbies 32 - 30 ChiefsBrumbies vs Chiefs Report
Sharks 31 - 27 HighlandersSharks vs Highlanders Report
Saturday , July 12
Crusaders 34 - 8 HighlandersCrusaders vs Highlanders Report
Reds 3 - 34 WaratahsReds vs Waratahs Report
Lions 60 - 25 CheetahsLions vs Cheetahs Report
Stormers 10 - 34 SharksStormers vs Sharks Report
Friday , July 11
Blues 8 - 11 ChiefsBlues vs Chiefs Report
Brumbies 47 - 25 Western ForceBrumbies vs Western Force Report
Bulls 40 - 7 Melbourne RebelsBulls vs Melbourne Rebels Report
Sunday , July 6
Waratahs 44 - 16 HighlandersWaratahs vs Highlanders Report
Saturday , July 5
Crusaders 21 - 13 BluesCrusaders vs Blues Report
Western Force 30 - 20 RedsWestern Force vs Reds Report
Stormers 16 - 0 BullsStormers vs Bulls Report
Cheetahs 27 - 20 SharksCheetahs vs Sharks Report
Friday , July 4
Chiefs 24 - 16 HurricanesChiefs vs Hurricanes Report
Lions 34 - 17 Melbourne RebelsLions vs Melbourne Rebels Report
More Super Rugby results
International Match
Saturday , June 28
South Africa 55 - 6 ScotlandSouth Africa vs Scotland Report
More International Match results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 16 - 9 CrusadersHurricanes vs Crusaders Report
Waratahs 39 - 8 BrumbiesWaratahs vs Brumbies Report
Western Force 14 - 40 BluesWestern Force vs Blues Report
Friday , June 27
Highlanders 29 - 25 ChiefsHighlanders vs Chiefs Report
Melbourne Rebels 20 - 36 RedsMelbourne Rebels vs Reds Report
More Super Rugby results
International Match
Saturday , June 21
Australia 39 - 13 FranceAustralia vs France Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00