robdylan

Key Bulls to duck?


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Bulls, Original Content on 10 Apr 2008 at 13:51

Looks like Loftus could see yet another exodus of senior players come the end of the 2008 season.

Our friends over at Keo.co.za put up an article listing several key Bulls players whose contracts come up for renewal at the end of the year. This list reads like a veritable who’s-who of Bulls rugby, including loose forwards Pedrie Wannenburg and Wikus van Heerden, as well as outside centre JP Nel. They mention Wynand Olivier’s name as well, although his departure seems less likely.

Now we all know that Nel is a liability, known far more for his illegal tackling technique than he is for his hard, straight running at outside centre. His departure would certainly improve the Bulls’ woeful disciplinary record, yet would do nothing for their backline otherwise, as they have no replacement lined up. The Bulls have a plethora of young centres in their ranks, but none have yet been given any opportunity to develop their game at the higher level; as such, blooding them in the Super 14 represents a sizable risk.

In Dewald Potgieter, Hilton Lobberts and Deon Stegmann, the Bulls have a trio of young, up-and-coming loose forwards. Add Derick Kuün to that list (should he revert to his rightful position) and you have a potent-looking unit, although again it’s a case of potential over experience.

Bakkies Botha, Wynand Olivier and Bryan Habana all signed five-year extensions to their contracts in 2006, meaning that all three should in theory remain with the Bulls at least until 2011. We have already seen Bakkies doing his level best to get out of his contract, though and persistent rumours linking both Olivier and Habana to Narbonne casts at least some doubt on the willingness of this trio of Bulls stars to stay at Loftus as a part of the Frans Ludeke circus.

All-in-all, the signs are starting to point to serious rebuilding-time up in Tshwane. The post-Heyneke hangover is in full swing and the Bulls Union need to do some soul-searching. A new coach is a must, plus a rebuilding phase that starts with the Currie Cup, emphasising young up-and-comers over stalwarts whose hearts are no longer in it.

We have heard the hype about the Bulls age-group supremacy. Time for that to translate into senior dominance again in a season or two’s time.



13 Comments

  • “Bakkies Botha, Wynand Olivier and Bryan Habana all signed five-year extensions to their contracts in 2006…”….

    Teach them (and Bernie) for trying to play the Bulls off against the Sharks in a bidding war….grin and bear it boys

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.04.08 14:19:36 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive PassCurrie Cup player
     
  • Well at least JP Nel is leaving…

    That increases the creativity of their backline by at least 20%.

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.04.08 14:22:38 by wpw (YNWA) Reply
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    wpwAssistant coach
     
  • The future doesn’t look so bright in Tshwane… :neutral:

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.04.08 14:25:38 by blackshark (YNWA) Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • DP – irony. Gotta love it.

    Wes… you know, the funny thing about Nel is that he’s actually not a bad centre. He is strong and fast and straightens the line beautifully. He is made to look terrible because they always play idiots inside him. And then, of course, there’s his discipline.

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.04.08 14:26:08 by robd'ylan Reply
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  • …or lack thereof .

    Without these players the Bulls will be worse than the lions B team.

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.04.08 14:37:11 by blackshark (YNWA) Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • I wonder what will happen to Liefling? Also, Morne Steyn must be getting pretty gatvol by now. He’s a better player than you’d think, given how seldom he gets to start for the Bulls. Still very young as well.

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.04.08 14:39:16 by robd'ylan Reply
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  • Liefling will tour with Steve Hofmeyr…

  • Comment 7, posted at 10.04.08 14:43:18 by blackshark (YNWA) Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • I really rated Morne when he started with the Bulls – said he deserved a place before Liefling…that was untill he became a “true bull”…now I just wanna smash his scmuck face everytime I see it – good or not :twisted:

  • Comment 8, posted at 10.04.08 14:43:34 by I'ce Reply
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  • Comment 6 of 6, posted at 10.04.08 14:39:16 by robd’ylan

    I always wonder how a Morne Steyn or even a Liefling….or the thought no Bull fan would ever entertain…a Naas Botha would play or have played if they had been in another province?

    Naas actually had the ability to be a complete number 10 and showed it on occassions.

  • Comment 9, posted at 10.04.08 14:46:28 by Dive Pass Reply

    Dive PassCurrie Cup player
     
  • Morne Steyn would do very well at the Lions…

  • Comment 10, posted at 10.04.08 15:00:43 by robd'ylan Reply
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  • Can we really be concernd about the players leaving??

    please in the global era none of the players will make a impact in the green and gold so an early or in JPN case a long over due retirement is welcome

  • Comment 11, posted at 10.04.08 15:04:45 by barend Reply

    barendVodacom Cup player
     
  • Well …I have to duck…

    Check you tomorrow morning…Sharks forever!!!

  • Comment 12, posted at 10.04.08 15:08:19 by blackshark (YNWA) Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • cheers BSYNWA

  • Comment 13, posted at 10.04.08 15:30:52 by robd'ylan Reply
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