CAPE TOWN – Bulls chief government Edgar Rathbone has hit again at these rugby followers who really feel that the Pretoria facet have been unfairly favoured after two of their matches had been rescheduled as a consequence of Covid-19.
In reality, he says that it’s critical for the integrity of the Currie Cup that their Gauteng derby in opposition to the Lions does happen, with the Bulls topping the log and the Lions six factors adrift.
Following a “substantial” variety of constructive Covid-19 circumstances in Jake White’s squad, the Bulls noticed their earlier fixture in opposition to Griquas in Kimberley cancelled.
But subsequently, they’ve managed to maneuver the Lions encounter from this Saturday to Wednesday, January 6 at Loftus Versfeld ( 7pm kick-off), in addition to shifting their last league sport in opposition to the Pumas from Friday, January 8 to Sunday, January 10 (4pm kick-off).
The rearranged matches has drawn the ire of Lions supporters specifically, who really feel their crew had been unable to reschedule two Super Rugby Unlocked video games in opposition to the Cheetahs and Pumas.
“In terms of the protocols, the option has always been there for teams to reschedule if a match is at risk, an agreement between two provinces. We were lucky that we reached that agreement last week already when we saw there might be a risk. We were in a favourable position in that our bye and the Lions’ bye is a week from each other, so there was a gap there,” Rathbone stated throughout a web-based press convention yesterday.
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“And luckily, the CEO of the Pumas, Marius (van Rensburg) and Jimmy (Stonehouse, the coach) also agreed to move our fixture against them to the Sunday (10 January).
“I think in terms of us having an unfair advantage, I don’t believe that’s there. We need to play two games in a week, and leading up to the play-offs.
For the Lions, they’ve already had two matches where they’ve had to share points, so they also need to play two games in one week.
“If you talk about the integrity of the competition, for the Currie Cup, it’s important that this match gets played. Not only this match – if the other matches could’ve been rescheduled, (then) they should’ve been. But top-of-the-table clash, Jukskei Derby, is important for the competition.”
Rathbone added that the Bulls had delayed their Covid-19 retesting from this previous Monday till Sunday, December 27, and that every one gamers and coaches had been in isolation at dwelling – they’re anticipated again at coaching on Monday, December 28 if given the all clear.
He did say, although, that the break offers the gamers a welcome breather. “It’s obviously not ideal, but it also gives the bodies a bit of time to recover. We had a few niggling injuries that’s now got a bit of time to heal, and if we test clear on the 27th, we can start training on the 28th. That gives us a week-and-a-half to get ready for the Lions match on the sixth, so we should be okay – and fresh going into the semi-finals,” stated Rathbone.