Super Rugby

Sunwolves beat Bulls in Singapore




Super Rugby moves to Singapore for the third match on Saturday where Japan’s Sunwolves host South Africa’s Bulls from Pretoria.

The Sunwolves have played the Bulls four times in Super rugby since they joined in 2016 and they have won one.

Match detail

We are waiting for the kick-off.

1.00: PEEEEP! We are underway in hot and humid Singapore.

2.00: TRY! Hayden Parker finishes a wonderful move. Michael Little’s break in midfield sees the Sunwolves inside the Bulls 22. The ball is recycled quickly to the left where Little plays Parker into the corner. 5-0

3.00: CONVERSION! Parker slots the touchline kick. 7-0

4.00: The TMO awarded the try, but in the build-up, it looked as though a forward pass was thrown. Very lucky for the Sunwolves.

7.00: The Bulls are slowly making their way into the opposition’s 22, but Shunsuke Nunomaki wins the penalty turnover at the breakdown.

10.00: Semisi Masirewa saves the day at the back, but the winger brings the ball over his line under pressure from Jesse Kriel. Five-metre scrum under the sticks to the Bulls.

11.00: A big scrum leads to a penalty. The away team opt for another scrum.

12.00: Pierre Schoeman is pinged for standing up and the Sunwolves clear their lines.

14.00: Parker kicks the ball into the Bulls 22. The away team has a defensive lineout, five-metres out from their goal-line.

17.00: The game is being played at a slow pace. The humidity is definitely having an effect.

19.00: TRY! Keisuke Uchida finishes off a sneaky lineout move. Takuma Asahara and Jaba Bregvadze were instrumental in setting up the score with the throw and Asahara’s run down the touchline before playing an inside ball to his scrumhalf. 12-0

20.00: CONVERSION! Parker slots another two points. 14-0

22.00: TRY! The Bulls hit back! Jesse Kriel charges down Gerhard van den Heever’s clearance, the ball bounces kindly and the Springbok centre is over for his team’s first try of the evening. 14-5 

24.00: CONVERSION! Handre Pollard adds the extras. 14-7

25.00: The Bulls are back in this game.

28.00: TRY! Oh dear! What are the Sunwolves, Van der Heever in particular? The fullback tries an outrageous quick-throw to Uchida, but the ball is wayward and Kriel pounces for his second try. 14-12

28.00: CONVERSION! Pollard levels the scores. 14-all

31.00: The Bulls have been ordinary in their midfield defending. Yet another break, this time by Uchida, sees the No. 9 racing past halfway, only for the move to break down after a knock on.

34.00: The Bulls have not had any chances out wide. Warrick Gelant and Divan Rossouw have seen no ball.

36.00: The Bulls win a penalty and go to their driving maul. It is a good drive which results in the Sunwolves collapsing it after a side entry. Another penalty.

38.00: YELLOW CARD! Willie Britz is off for ten minutes. Another powerful drive sees the Bulls crash over the line, however, the Bulls lost the ball forward.

39.00: The Bulls kick to the corner for the third time. They put in another superb drive. Conraad van Vuuren thinks he’s scored, but the TMO doesn’t think so, and so the Sunwolves survive a battering. The TMO over-ruling has become a theme in this year’s tournament.

40.00: TRY! Pollard ghosts through some poor defence from close range. The Bulls win a counter-ruck and the ball, Embrose Papier played the off-runner, Schoeman. The prop gives the ball to his general, who throws a dummy which sends three defenders fetching onion bagels. Pollard stepped back inside and sped past another three defenders before scoring under the posts. 14-19

41.00: CONVERSION! Pollard converts his score. 14-21

The halftime score was Sunwolves 14 Bulls 21

41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in Singapore. 

42.00: PENALTY! Pollard extends his team’s lead with a kick in front of the posts after Yoshitaka Tokunaga is caught offsides. 14-24

44.00: Pollard doesn’t take a high-ball and the ball bounces off the flyhalf and into touch for a Sunwolves lineout.

46.00: TRY! Masirewa takes Parker’s inside ball and ghosts through a gap, draws the defender and sends Van den Heever away in the corner. 19-24

47.00: CONVERSION! Parker slots another touchline conversion to reduce the deficit. 21-24

48.00: Britz returns to the field.

49.00: TRY! Schoeman is over after taking Kriel’s inside ball. 21-29

50.00: CONVERSION! Pollard can’t miss from there. 21-31

51.00: TRY! Britz picks up a stray pass and beats Papier to the try-line. Little’s run set up the penalty and the skipper finished off with style. 26-31

54.00: CONVERSION! It’s an exhibition by the kickers this evening. 28-31

57.00: Van den Heever is off the field injured, giving the players a much-needed rest. The second-half has been end-to-end. If the players had not made so many knock-ons, this would be a cricket score.

59.00: The Bulls win another scrum-penalty. Pollard will take a shot at goal from 43 metres.

60.00: PENALTY! Pollard extends the lead to six. 28-34

62.00: We have entered the final quarter. The Bulls’ bench will be the difference in this game because the visitors will not be accustomed to this kind of humidity. The players looked drained.

64.00: TRY! Little finishes a sensational move. It came from inside the Sunwolves 22. They went down the field with some great offloading, but it was the turnover that started the counter-attack. 33-34

65.00: CONVERSION! Parker puts his team back in front. 35-34

70.00: NO TRY! Andre Warner is over after some sustained pressure by the Bulls on the Sunwolves’ line. Warner lost the ball forward, but the Bulls have a penalty in front of the poles.

71.00: PENALTY! Pollard puts the Bulls back in front. 35-37

73.00: Little wins a crucial penalty at the ruck. Parker kicks to the Bulls 22. Big moment in the game coming up.

75.00: TRY! Rahboni Warren Vosayako is over under the posts. He was not held, got up and raced away for the game-turning try. 40-37

76.00: CONVERSION! Parker adds the two. 42-37

79.00: The Sunwolves are running down the clock.

80.00: Scrum to the home team. The hooter sounds.

81.00: The ball is kicked into touch and the Sunwolves get another famous victory over the Bulls.

Game over.

In the meantime why not have a look at the match preview.

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The final score is Sunwolves 42 (14) Bulls 37 (21)


Tries – Parker, Uchida, Van den Heever, Britz, Little, Vosayako
Pen –
Con – Parker (6)
Drop –
Cards – Britz (Yellow, 38′)

Tries – Kriel (2), Pollard, Schoeman
Pen – Pollard (3)
Con – Pollard (4)
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe
Assistant Ref 1: Shuhei Kubo
Assistant Ref 2: Tasuku Kawahara
TMO: Minoru Fuji


Sunwolves: 15 Gerhard van den Heever, 14 Semisi Masirewa, 13 Jason Emery, 12 Michael Little, 11 Akihito Yamada, 10 Hayden Parker, 9 Keisuke Uchida, 8 Yoshitaka Tokunaga, 7 Shunsuke Nunomaki, 6 Willem Britz (captain), 5 Uwe Helu, 4 James Moore, 3 Takuma Asahara, 2 Jaba Bregvadze, 1 Craig Millar.

Replacements: 16 Yusuke Niwai, 17 Shintaro Ishihara, 18 Hencus van Wyk, 19 Grant Hattingh, 20 Rahboni Warren Vosayako, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Rikiya Matsuda, 23 Ryoto Nakamura.

Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Jamba Ulengo, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Johnny Kotze, 11 Divan Rossouw, 10 Handre Pollard (captain), 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Marco van Staden, 5 Rudolph Snyman, 4 Jason Jenkins, 3 Conraad van Vuuren, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman.

Replacements: 16 Edgar Marutlulle, 17 Simphiwe Matanzima, 18 Morné Smith, 19 Thembelani Bholi, 20 Nic de Jager, 21 Andre Warner, 22 Manie Libbok, 23 Dries Swanepoel.

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