Vodacom Bulls Will Chase Bonus Point And Big Points Difference Against NovaVit Griffons


The Vodacom Bulls will chase five log points and a big points difference when they host NovaVit Griffons on Friday at 17h00 at Loftus Versveld.

The NovaVit Griffons claimed a historic victory over the Vodacom Bulls in round four of the tournament. This week, the Northern Free Staters will face a stronger team when they travel to Loftus Versfeld, and the result may be very different.

A Vodacom Bulls side loaded with Springboks will be favourites to beat a team languishing at eighth on the log. The big question is whether Jake White’s charges will secure a four-try bonus point, and finish the weekend in the top four.

The Vodacom Bulls named a rotated team for this very important clash.

At the front, Jan-Hendrik Wessels comes in for Johan Grobbelaar with Francois Klopper lining up alongside him, swapping places with Mornay Smith who slots into the impact squad. In the second row, the lock combination sees Ruan Vermaak pair up with Janko Swanepoel who comes into the fold in place of Ruan Nortje. The back row, has captain, Marcell Coetzee (blindside flanker) alongside Cyle Brink (openside flanker) and eight-man, Nizaam Carr.

At the back: Embrose Papier will have a new partner at halfback as Chris Smith starts at fly-half with Johan Goosen moving to full-back. Goosen’s switch sees David Kriel move to left wing this week, where he will pair up with Cornal Hendricks on the right. Chris Barend Smit will start at inside centre replacing Harold Vorster with Stedman Gans retaining his spot at outside centre. The impact squad has Simphiwe Matanzima, Joe van Zyl, Mornay Smith, Reinhardt Ludwig, Mihlali Mosi, Keagan Johannes, Sibongile Novuka and Wandisile Simelane who returns from a hamstring niggle.

The NovaVit Griffons made two changes to their line-up.

Marquit September replaces Jandre de Beer at the inside center while up front, Thato Mavundla replaces Mitchell Carstens on the side of the scrum.


Bulls: 15 Johan Goosen, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13 Stedman Gans, 12 Chris Barend Smit, 11 David Kriel, 10 Chris Smith, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Marcell Coetzee (c), 5 Janko Swanepoel, 4 Ruan Vermaak, 3 Francois Klopper, 2 Jan-Hendrik Wessels, 1 Gerhard Steenekamp. Replacements: 16 Simphiwe Matanzima, 17 Joe van Zyl, 18 Mornay Smith, 19 Reinhardt Ludwig, 20 Mihlali Mosi, 21 Keagan Johannes, 22 Sibongile Novuka, 23 Wandisile Simelane.

Griffons: 15 Duan Pretorius, 14 Domenic Smit, 13 Carel-Jan Coetzee, 12 Marquit September, 11 Randy Fielies, 10 Robbie Petzer, 9 Jaywinn Juries, 8 Sokuphumla Xakalashe, 7 Thomas Ongera, 6 Thato Mavundla, 5 Michael Benadie, 4 Rian Olivier, 3 Doctor Booysen, 2 Hendrik van Schoor, 1 Xolani Jacobs. Replacements – from: 16 Dandre Delport, 17 Stephan de Jager, 18 Buhle Nojekwa, 19 Wikus Nieuwenhuis, 20 Ludio Williams, 21 Jean Pretorius, 22 Keanu Vers, 23 Duren Hoffman, 24 Curtly Thomas, 25 Chadley Wenn, 26 Ethan Williams.