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
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks15:15
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs Dragons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Toulouse vs Grenoble20:45
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821