Bulls Super rugby head coach Pote Human has paired Trevor Nyakane with fellow Springbok prop, Lizo Gqoboka in the front row to face the Stormers in Cape Town on Saturday.
Nyakane’s selection is the only change to the starting team with Wiehahn Herbst shifting to the bench.
Gerhard Steenekamp is set to make his Super Rugby debut if he comes on as a replacement prop while Bulls head coach, Pote Human, has opted for a 5/3 split amongst the replacements which makes room for utility back Divan Rossouw.
History does not favour the Bulls in Cape Town as they last beat the Stormers in the Mother City in 2011 but the team does take comfort in knowing how to unlock their opponents after last season’s 40-0 drubbing at Loftus Versfeld which was followed by a narrow one-point loss in the return fixture.
Bulls captain, Burger Odendaal, explained how the players felt after their loss against the Sharks and added that although their confidence took a dip on their way back to Pretoria, it shot straight back up when the players returned to training.
“The players were extremely disappointed. There is no two ways about it as we let ourselves down especially considering that we were in it until the final minute. We have the manpower to beat any team and we will take that mindset into our second South African derby in as many weeks.”
Human was happy with his team’s discipline against the Sharks where they only conceded five penalties but added that this week’s preparations included serious conversations about finishing try scoring opportunities.
“Our discipline was good on the night which allowed us to stay in the game but tries are our bread and butter and we cannot afford to fluff so many opportunities. Super Rugby is extremely brutal so when the try line presents itself we need to take full advantage of it.”
15. Warrick Gelant, 14. Cornal Hendricks, 13. Johnny Kotze, 12. Burger Odendaal (C), 11. Rosko Specman, 10. Morné Steyn, 9. Ivan van Zyl, 8. Josh Strauss, 7. Abongile Nonkontwana, 6. Jeandré Rudolph, 5. Juandré Kruger, 4. Andries Ferreira, 3. Trevor Nyakane, 2. Jaco Visagie, 1. Lizo Gqoboka.
Replacements: 16. Johan Grobbelaar, 17. Gerhard Steenekamp, 18. Wiehahn Herbst, 19. Ruan Nortje, 20. Wian Vosloo, 21. Embrose Papier, 22. Manie Libbok, 23. Divan Rossouw.