Blue Bulls recall Libbok, pick five Blitzboks for Griquas clash

Blue Bulls recall Libbok, pick five Blitzboks for Griquas clash

The Blue Bulls will have five players with extensive Blitzboks experience in their team when they play Griquas in round four of the Currie Cup at Loftus on Saturday.

Stedman Gans joins Cornal Hendriks, who has a Commonwealth Gold medal, and Dylan Sage, Tim Agaba and Rosko Specman who each boast a bronze medal for the last Olympic Games in Rio. Gans will start off the bench against Griquas.

The transition from the old traditional running approach in recent seasons will be boosted by these sevens players with their super fitness and skills

Coach Pote Human also made one change to the starting line-up by bring flyhalf Manie Libbok back

Libbok played off the bench last weekend in Nelspruit, where the Blue Bulls edged the Pumas to claim their first win of the competition and coach Pote Human kept faith in those returning victorious from the Mbombela Stadium.

Libbok swops jerseys with Marnitz Boshoff, who will finish the game while Blitzbok Stedman Gans is the only new face in the matchday squad. 

Gans has been fully integrated since his return from the Blitzboks last month and will play off the bench against the Kimberley side, the same team he made his debut against two seasons ago. He comes in for Jade Stighling.

♦ Human said it was easy to reward the Nelspruit victors.

"That was a hard-fought win for us over a respected opponent at a venue where we battled in the past, so it was the right thing to reward the team who claimed that victory. The swop between Marnitz and Manie is purely tactical as we approach this match against Griquas slightly different," Human said.

"Also, it is nice to have Stedman back in the mix and I am keen to see him showing us what he is capable of. Jade did nothing wrong, but with Stedman in, we have a bit more flexibility in the back-line," Human explained.

The coach held the reins in Kimberley before and warned his players to prepare for an onslaught.

"They will come at us hard, no doubt. They will be smarting after their defeat last weekend and probably have the most momentum of all teams in the competition."

Ruan Steenkamp, who will lead the team into battle, said they are looking forward to play at home again.

"Our last outing at home did not go well, unfortunately, so we are keen to redeem ourselves. We must perform and I believe we can do so if we stick to our plan and approach and take the game to them. If we play at our pace and on our terms, we will be hard to beat."

Blue Bulls –
15 Divan Rossouw, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13 Dylan Sage, 12 Johnny Kotze, 11 Rosko Specman, 10 Manie Libbok, 9 Embrose Papier, 8 Tim Agaba, 7 Marco van Staden, 6 Ruan Steenkamp (capt.), 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Wiehahn Herbst, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Simphiwe Matanzima. Replacements: 16 Johan Grobbelaar, 17 Dayan van der Westhuizen, 18 Conraad van Vuuren, 19 Adri Smit, 20 Wihan Vosloo, 21 André Warner, 22 Marnitz Boshoff, 23 Stedman Gans.