The Bulls will get the weekend’s URC action underway on Friday when they welcome Glasgow Warriors to Pretoria.
Marcell Coetzee and company will look to kick on from their convincing win against Benetton last week when they meet the sixth-placed Glasgow at their fortress Loftus Versfeld, where a win would see them earn their sixth victory in seven outings.
Bulls vs Glasgow Warriors preview
They will, however, go up against a determined Scottish outfit who are equally resolute to remain in the top eight for a quarter-final spot and who will want to avoid a possible fourth straight away defeat in the competition for the first time since 2018.
The Bulls’ starting team show several changes from the side that beat Benetton with the only change upfront being loose forward Arno Botha returning to the starting line-up in place of Cyle Brink, who is on bench.
At the back James Verity-Amm starts on the wing, with Canan Moodie at fullback in place of Kurt-Lee Arendse, who has been ruled out with a thumb injury, while the team includes a new halfback pairing in Zak Burger and Morne Steyn, with Embrose Papier and Chris Smith named among the replacements.
“We have a tough task ahead of us this Friday,” said Bulls Director of Rugby, Jake White.
“Despite their defeat to the Stormers last week, Glasgow Warriors are a formidable side that we expect will bring a huge challenge for us. They are a well-coached group with a number of highly talented internationals in their squad. We will need to be alert and at our best for the entire 80 minutes.”
Glasgow Warriors Head Coach Danny Wilson said: “After a physical encounter with the Stormers last weekend, we’re looking forward to another challenging test against the Bulls tomorrow night. We’re pleased to welcome back the experience of club co-captains Ryan Wilson and Fraser Brown. The Bulls are a physical side who have been very good at home and we’ll need to be at our best when we take them on tomorrow night in Pretoria.”
Bulls: Canan Moodie, James Verity-Amm, Lionel Mapoe, Cornal Hendricks, Madosh Tambwe, Morne Steyn, Zak Burger; Gerhard Steenekamp, Johan Grobbelaar, Mornay Smith, Walt Steenkamp, Ruan Nortje, Marcell Coetzee (CAPT), Arno Botha, Elrigh Louw
Replacements: Jan-Hendrik Wessels, Simphiwe Matanzima, Dylan Smith, Janko Swanepoel, Cyle Brink; Embrose Papier, Chris Smith, Harold Vorster
Glasgow Warriors: Ollie Smith, Josh McKay, Sione Tuipulotu, Stafford McDowall, Cole Forbes, Duncan Weir, Ali Price, Jamie Bhatti, George Turner, Zander Fagerson, Rob Harley, Richie Gray, Ryan Wilson (CAPT), Rory Darge, Jack Dempsey.
Replacements: Fraser Brown, Oli Kebble, Simon Berghan, Kiran McDonald, Thomas Gordon, Jamie Dobie, Ross Thompson, Sam Johnson
ALSO READ: Bulls skipper desperate to get off the 8th spot bubble
Bulls vs Glasgow Warriors: Stats and facts
Bulls flyhalf Chris Smith took his season tally beyond 100 points in last weekend’s win over Benetton. His 110 points for the campaign put him 3rd behind the Stormers’ Manie Libbok and Connacht’s Jack Carty (114).
Kurt-Lee Arendse has been one of the Bulls’ most dangerous weapons this season and tops the URC figures for both clean breaks (21) and metres gained (991).
The Bulls have registered more offloads than any other team in the competition (198), with Marcell Coetzee leading the individual standings on 32.
Glasgow Warriors have missed fewer tackles than any of their URC rivals, with their tally of 169 sitting 29 clear of the next best figure of 198, which belongs to Ulster. Taken as a percentage, Glasgow have a 92.08% tackle success rate – another high watermark for the competition.
Danny Wilson’s team have also been brilliant scrummagers this season and boast the URC’s highest success rate for scrums won (96.26%). Richie Gray has performed more line-out steals than any other player in the URC.
The Bulls were beaten 17-10 by Edinburgh in their only previous meeting with a Scottish opponent in October.
Glasgow Warriors lost to the Stormers last weekend and have not lost successive URC matches since November. They have lost their last 3 on the road in the competition and have not suffered 4 on the spin away from home since April 2018.
Bulls v Glasgow Warriors
Date: Friday, 29 April
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
SA Time: 19:00
Referee: Nika Amashukeli
Stream: DStv Now
ALSO READ: Sharks, Stormers drawing big audience in record TV numbers