Bulls charging into George




Blue Bulls coach Heyneke Meyer has named a large squad, of 44 players, which will spend the next few weeks in the picturesque Southern Cape town of George, where they will undergo an arduous three-week training camp ahead of next year’s Super 14.

Meyer said that the players have to get to George by themselves and have to arrive by Sunday, when the camp starts.

“It’s the third year that we are going to George,” Meyer said.

“The idea is to get away from our comfort zone in Pretoria and work hard with no outside interference. With the Super 14 starting in the first week of February next year, we don’t have a lot of time to prepare. We’ll use this camp to get most of our ducks in a row.

“We will stay in a school hostel in George until 22 December, cramming in up to four sessions a day after which the players will get a break. Then it’s back to work again on 3 January, with our first warm-up game a week later.”

Apart from a number of injured players and Springboks, the Bulls will be at full strength in George.

Victor Matfield, Pedrie Wannenburg and Fourie du Preez have been training with the squad for the last few weeks.

The Boks that are on tour at the moment – Gary Botha, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Danie Rossouw, Hilton Lobberts, Wikus van Heerden and Wynand Olivier – will be given a week or so to recuperate before they head to George.

Akona Ndungane and Bryan Habana, who are back in South Africa already, will also get a short break before joining their Bulls team-mates.

Injured players like Bakkies Botha, Gurthr’ Steenkamp, Richard Bands, Danie Thiart, Pierre Spies, Tim Dlulane, Johan Wasserman, Heini Adams, Dries Scholtz and Frikkie Welsh will all either stay at home to do rehab or join the camp for a short time.

Meanwhile the Bulls refuted reports that assistant coach Mike Bayly will move to the Vodacom Cup-side as head coach. Bayly will probably be redeployed at another team in the union, but it has not been decided where yet.

Todd Louden, an Australian back-line specialist who has been with the Bulls for a couple of weeks, will in all likelihood take over the back-line coaching duties at the Super 14-side.

Bulls squad: Heini Adams, Stefan Basson, Ruan Boshoff, Bakkies Botha, Gary Botha, Marius Delport, Danwel Demas, Fourie du Preez, Jaco Engels, Nicholas Eyer, Adriaan Fondse, Rayno Gerber, Bryan Habana Bryan, Derick Hougaard, Rocco Jansen, Wayne Julies, Werner Kruger, Derick Ku’n, Hilton Lobberts, John Mametsa, Victor Matfield, Cliffie Milton, Akona Ndungane, JP Nel, Trompie Nontshinga, Gerrie Odendaal, Wynand Olivier, Dewald Potgieter, Jacques-Louis Potgieter, Neil Powell, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Johan Roets, Danie Rossouw, Wessel Roux, Dries Scholtz, Gurthro Steenkamp, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Morn’ Steyn, Danie Thiart, James van der Walt, Wikus van Heerden, Francois van Schouwenburg, Pedrie Wannenburg, Frikkie Welsh

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