Sharks coach says Bulls can go all the way



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Defeated Sharks coach John Plumtree says that he believes that the Bulls are goo enough to win their second Super 14 title after they finished top of the table.

Plumtree did however say that this depended on the team’s ability to play “positive” attacking rugby, rather than adopting a defensive approach against their New Zealand counterparts.

The Bulls sealed a home semi-final and a potential final after they beat the Sharks 26-27 in Durban while the Chiefs also sealed a home semi-final against in the Hurricanes in Hamilton.

New Zealander Plumtree who is a former successful Wellington coach said that the Bulls would have to beat their New Zealand rivals at their own game, as they thrive on placing pressure on the opposition’s defence.

“You can’t rely on a big crowd and home ground advantage to get you to the final,” Plumtree told Business Day shortly after his team’s defeat against the Bulls.

“If you end up playing a few Kiwi teams they will test you from a defensive perspective because that’s the way the Kiwis play.”

“So the Bulls have to make sure they do their own attacking.”

“Hopefully, they won’t get defensive in the way they attack and really get out there and play.”

Plumtree admitted that even though dominating territory which the Bulls have relied on heavily this season it should not be the emphasis going into the semifinal.

“Territory is important in a semifinal, but the Bulls are going to have to get out there,” said Plumtree.

“You need a really positive mindset, and actually this year they can win it, especially playing at Loftus.”

Plumtree said that he was confident in the Bulls’ ability to lift the silverware and added that they had all the ingredients for a successful team.

“The Bulls are an outstanding side. They’ve got strength in every position and some world class players in key positions,” said Plumtree.

“If you look at Morné Steyn ( flyhalf), he’s had a really good competition. You know he’s had some real consistency and played every game.

“And his partnership with Fourie (du Preez, the Springbok scrumhalf) is obviously very important.

“So you know they’ve just got to make sure that they stay positive in terms of their attacking.”

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