Vodacom Bulls coach Frans Ludeke named an unchanged starting XV to face the Southern Kings in their first ever Vodacom Super Rugby clash in Port Elizabeth on Saturday night.
The same run-on team that tackled the Toyota Cheetahs at Loftus Versfeld last week will front up against the Kings, but the return to fitness by Bjorn Basson sees one change on the bench.
Try scoring ace Basson replaces Ulrich Beyers on the reserve bench.
“We had to work very hard for the win against the Cheetahs and we want that momentum carried over into the Kings match,” coach Frans Ludeke explained.
“I am pleased with the way the combinations worked on the night and decided to stick with that. We will need to be very structured and cohesive against the Kings, who will be fired up and spurred on by a sell-out crowd. To have an unchanged team will hopefully offset those early challenges,” Ludeke said.
Vodacom Bulls captain Pierre Spies added: “We had to dig deep and needed all 22 in the squad to beat the Cheetahs, something that will work in our favour when facing the Kings for the first time. We need to focus on our own game and not allow the crowd to get into the match, so we need to have a strong start and keep up the effort,” Spies said.
The team to play the Kings (with Super Rugby caps) is: Jürgen Visser (4), Akona Ndungane (87), JJ Engelbrecht (23), Jan Sefontein (5), Lionel Mapoe (34), Mornè Steyn (113), Jano Vermaak (95), Pierre Spies (96, c), Dewald Potgieter (58), Deon Stegmann (66), Juandrè Kruger (24), Flip van der Merwe (53), Frik Kirsten (22), Chiliboy Ralepelle (59), Mornè Mellett (7). Replacements: Callie Visagie (17), Werner Kruger (82), Paul Willemse (4), Arno Botha (16), Rudy Paige (1), Louis Fouchè (16), Bjorn Basson (45).