Home team Away Team

Bulls

  • Serfontein,
    Penalty goals: Potgieter (5),
    Drop goals: Potgieter,
    Conversions: Potgieter,
25 - 17

Lions

  • Watermeyer, Wepener,
    Penalty goals: Boshoff,
    Conversions: Boshoff (2),
  • Super Rugby
  • Overall Group
  • 1st Mar 2014
  • KO 15:05
  • Ground: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria

Super Rugby: Bulls v Lions match preview

Last updated: 27th February 2014  

Warwick Tecklenburg for the Golden Lions

Warwick Tecklenburg: Starts in the place of the injured Derick Minnie for the Lions

Victor Matfield Bulls v Cheetahs SR 2014

Victor Matfield: Comes into the Bulls starting line-up

Related links

Preview

Report

Video

Teams

Also see

The Bulls have made changes to their starting line-up to face the Lions at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday as they look to post their first win of this campaign.

The three times Super Rugby champions have made a dismal start to the season, losing to fellow South African rivals the Sharks and the Cheetahs.

Veteran lock Victor Matfield is among the changes to the starting side for the clash, which is live on Sky Sports 4HD at 3.05pm, with Jacques-Louis Potgieter (fly-half) and Frik Kirsten (tighthead prop) also coming into the side.

Matfield, 36, takes over from Grant Hattingh in the second-row. Hattingh moves from lock to the back of the scrum in place of Jacques Engelbrecht and Kirsten swaps places with Werner Kruger, with the latter on the bench for this match. Potgieter replaces Louis Fouche, who drops out of the 23 altogether.

Bulls coach Frans Ludeke believes the change in personnel will invigorate his side, who lacked composure in finishing off chances this far.

"It is still early in the competition, but we have to be honest with ourselves," he said.

"We cannot afford a repeat of the first two weekends, where we were lethargic and inaccurate in our set plays. The Lions are high on confidence, so we need not only to start well, but play with belief and commitment."

Spies blow

In a further blow, Bulls captain Pierre Spies has been ruled out for the rest of the season after a recurrence of a bicep injury.

Spies will have surgery this week on the problem that sidelined the No. 8 for six months last year.

This blow comes after a knee injury sidelined Springboks flanker Arno Botha for the season, leaving coach Ludeke cursing his bad luck.

"Pierre and Arno were an important part of our game plan and contributed tremendously when it came to leadership," he said.

Flip van der Merwe, who took over the captaincy from Spies last week, will again lead the team into battle.

For the Lions, head coach Johan Ackermann has made two enforced changes to his starting line-up.

The changes see Warwick Tecklenburg start in the place of the injured Derick Minnie and JW Jonker come into the side after Alwyn Hollenbach was unable to pass a fitness test on Thursday. As a result of this change, Stefan Watermeyer shifts back to inside centre, with Jonker partnering him.

Meanwhile, on the bench, Willie Britz will provide loose-forward cover, having recovered from his hip flexor injury. Utility back Courtnall Skosan also comes in and could make his Super Rugby debut.

Bulls: 15 Jurgen Visser, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Grant Hattingh, 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Jono Ross, 5 Victor Matfield, 4 Flip van der Merwe (c), 3 Frik Kirsten, 2 Callie Visagie, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Werner Kruger, 18 Marcel van der Merwe, 19 Paul Willemse, 20 Jacques Engelbrecht, 21 Piet van Zyl, 22 Handré Pollard, 23 Ulrich Beyers.

Lions: 15 Chrysander Botha, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 JW Jonker, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 Ruan Combrinck, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (c), 7 Warwick Tecklenburg, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Franco Mostert, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Schalk van der Merwe.
Replacements: 16 Willie Wepener, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Ruan Dreyer, 19 MB Lusaseni, 20 Willie Britz, 21 Ross Cronje, 22 Courtnall Skosan, 23 Coenie van Wyk.

SkyBet
Click here for more betting
Forthcoming Super Rugby Fixtures
TimeFixture
Super Rugby
Friday 27th March
Super Rugby
06:35Hurricanes vs Melbourne Rebels
09:00Reds vs Lions
Saturday 28th March
05:30Chiefs vs Cheetahs
06:35Highlanders vs Stormers
08:40Waratahs vs Blues
15:05Sharks vs Western Force
17:10Bulls vs Crusaders
Friday 3rd April
07:35Hurricanes vs Stormers
09:40Melbourne Rebels vs Reds
Saturday 4th April
07:35Chiefs vs Blues
09:40Brumbies vs Cheetahs
14:00Sharks vs Crusaders
16:05Lions vs Bulls
Friday 10th April
08:35Blues vs Brumbies
Saturday 11th April
08:35Crusaders vs Highlanders
10:40Waratahs vs Stormers
12:45Western Force vs Cheetahs
14:00Bulls vs Reds
16:05Lions vs Sharks
Friday 17th April
08:35Crusaders vs Chiefs
Saturday 18th April
05:30Hurricanes vs Waratahs
08:35Highlanders vs Blues
10:40Brumbies vs Melbourne Rebels
12:45Western Force vs Stormers
16:05Sharks vs Bulls

Experts & Blogs

Phil Edwards

Phil Edwards

Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com