Planet Rugby

Bulls leave it late at Loftus

16th August 2013 20:05

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Jurgen Visser Blue Bulls v Griquas CC 2013

Jurgen Visser: Nine points

The Blue Bulls held off a spirited Griquas side before registering a hard-fought 15-9 victory in Pretoria on Friday.

A draw, however, would have been a more fitting result for a game that was full of mistakes.

It was not so much a lack of trying, but perhaps the youthful vigour on either side, which led to the handling errors. The match just brought the excitement of the opening weekend of the Currie Cup to a sudden halt.

However, match referee Marius van der Westhuizen will not escape the ire of supporters when he yellow carded Ruan Snyman in the 58th minute for "making a mockery of the scrum feed".

This came after two earlier indiscretions with the put-in at scrum time.

Van der Westhuizen stamped his authority on the match as he dished out a great deal of penalties to both sides.

Griquas had two early opportunities to put points on the board through penalties within striking distance, but wing Nico Scheepers failed in his attempts at goal within a space of two minutes.

The first points of the match came courtesy of a penalty conversion by Blue Bulls fly-half Tony Jantjies.

The Bulls suffered an early injury blow when hooker Callie Visagie was replaced by Bongi Mbonambi in the 16th minute.

Shortly before the quarter mark the Bulls missed two opportunities at goal with Jantjies missing the target and then full-back Jurgen Visser's 55metre attempt hit the cross bar.

Griquas pivot Francois Brummer levelled the scores in the 21st minute and added another three-pointer, seven minutes from the break.

On the 40 minute mark Jantjies added three more points to the score, to see the two sides go into the break on a 6-6 stalemate.

While the second half produced some drama, it was not due to improved performances by the two sides.

Ironically the tables started to turn for the Bulls after Snyman was given his marching orders for his crooked scrum feed.

Visser converted two penalties in this period for a six-point lead, and put the final nail in the coffin in the 77th minute after a failed attempt three minutes earlier.

Griquas, however, did not go home empty handed as Brummer landed a penalty conversion on the full-time whistle to ensure a bonus point for finishing within seven points of the Bulls.

The scorers:

For Blue Bulls:
Pens: Jantjies 2, Visser 3
Yellow card: Snyman (crooked feed at scrum, 58th minute)

For Griquas:
Pens: Brummer 3

The teams:

Blue Bulls: 15 Jürgen Visser, 14 Sampie Mastriet, 13 Ulrich Beyers, 12 Francois Venter, 11 Travis Ismaiel, 10 Tony Jantjies, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Jono Ross (c), 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Wiaan Liebenberg, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Frik Kirsten, 2 Callie Visagie, 1 Morné Mellett.
Replacements: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Marcell van der Merwe, 18 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 19 Jean Cook, 20 Ruan Snyman, 21 Waylon Murray, 22 Clayton Blommetjies.

Griquas: 15 Gouws Prinsloo, 14 Nico Scheepers, 13 JP Nel, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 PJ Vermeulen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Jacques Coetzee, 8 Burger Schoeman, 7 Jonathan Adendorf, 6 Carel Greeff, 5 Jaco Nepgen, 4 Hilton Lobberts, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Ryno Barnes (c), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Matt Dobson, 17 Nick Schonert, 18 RJ Liebenberg, 19 Leon Karemaker, 20 Marnus Hugo, 21 Du Randt Gerber, 22 Rocco Jansen.

Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen

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