Vodacom-Red-VIP140x525

ABSA Currie Cup

Currie Cup Premier Division Unions

Cell C Sharks

**************

DHL WP

**************

Xerox Golden Lions

**************

Free State Cheetahs

**************

Vodacom Blue Bulls

**************

GWK Griquas Logo

**************

EP Kings

**************

Steval Pumas

Click on any of the pictures to go to that Union

This is the 8th and last article in the series of Bulls Squad Contenders for Super Rugby 2014. We do 2 articles per week per South African Super Rugby participating franchise.

We discuss the players IN the Super Rugby Group, and not all the options beyond that.

In this Article we look at the contenders for BACK THREE in the Vodacom Bulls 2014 Super Rugby group, and whether they could force their way into Bok contention.

 

 

The Contenders:

Name: Bjorn Alberic “Bjorn” Basson:

Position Left Wing / Fullback
Height 1.85m
Weight 84kg
Date of Birth 11 February 1987
Place of Birth King William’s Town
Provincial Debut 2008 for Griquas in Vodacom Cup against Border
Provincial Caps 71
Provincial Points 300
Super Rugby Debut 2007 for Cheetahs
Super Rugby Caps 55
Super Rugby Points 130
Test Debut 5 June 2010 vs Wales in Cardiff
Test Caps 11
Test Points 15
Bjorn Basson

Bjorn Basson is a product of Central Primary School and Dale College in King William’s Town.

He started his career playing for the Border Under 19 side in 2005 and 2006, he then moved to Kimberley to join Griquas. He made his debut in the 2008 Vodacom Cup competition, starting the match against former side Border Bulldogs in East London and scoring a try to help Griquas to a 15–5 win. He played in 8 matches, scoring five tries. His first ever Currie Cup season was in 2008 and saw him score a further 6 tries in 11 matches.

As a Griquas player, he could also play Super Rugby for the Cheetahs. He was included in the Cheetahs for the 2009 Super 14 season, scoring 1 try in 5 appearances. He also scored 1 try in his 3 appearances for Griquas in the 2009 Vodacom Cup. He started 12 matches for Griquas in the 2009 Currie Cup Premier Division, as well as 1 substitute appearance and scored 6 tries to once agains feature in the top ten try scorers list.

2010 Was Basson’s most prolific season of all. He scored 5 tries in just 4 starts for the Cheetahs in the 2010 Super 14 season, 6 tries in his 7 matches in the 2010 Vodacom Cup for Griquas, finishing joint third overall try scorer in the competition. and 2 tries in a compulsory friendly match against SWD Eagles prior to the 2010 Currie Cup Premier Division season.

He then broke the record for the most number of tries scored in a single Currie Cup season, scoring no less than 21 for Griquas in the 2010 Currie Cup Premier Division.

Basson signed a 2-year contract with the Blue Bulls Company on 19 September 2010. He later extended his contract, signing on until October 2016.

In 2011, Basson was the joint top try scorer in the 2011 Super Rugby season with 11 tries for the Bulls, along with Sean Maitland and Sarel Pretorius.

In 2008, Basson was chosen to represent the Emerging Springboks team, which went on to win the 2008 IRB Nations Cup in Romania.

During the 2009 British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa, he twice played against the Lions – once for the Royal XV and again for the Emerging Springboks.

Basson was selected for the Springboks tour of the United Kingdom and Ireland in 2010. He made his Test debut on 5 June 2010 against Wales in Cardiff.

On 15 November 2010 he and Chiliboy Ralepelle were suspended and sent home from the Northern Hemisphere tour after testing positive for a banned substance after the game against Ireland on 6 November 2010. Both players tested positive for methylhexaneamine, a “non-specified stimulant” on the prohibited substances list of WADA.

Basson played in 2 Tests during the 2012 mid-year series for the Springboks – their 36-27 win over England and their 14-14 draw with England.

In 2010 Bjorn was awarded the Absa Currie Cup Premier Division Player of the Year award.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 2005 – Border – SA Under 19 Competition
  • 2006 – Border – ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2007 – Griquas – ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2008 – Wildeklawer Griquas – Vodacom Cup, Emerging Springboks – IRB Nations Cup, Wildeklawer Griquas – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2009 – GWK Griquas – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Cheetahs – Vodacom Super 14, Emerging Springboks – British & Irish Lions Tour, Royal XV – British & Irish Lions Tour, GWK Griquas – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2010 – Vodacom Cheetahs – Vopdacom Super 14, GWK Griquas – Vodacom Cup, Springboks – Vodacom Incoming Tours, GWK Griquas – ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, GWK Griquas – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Springboks – Outgoing Tours
  • 2011 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Springboks – Castle Tri-Nations, Springboks – Outgoing Tours
  • 2012 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Springboks – Castle Incoming Series, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2013 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Springboks – Castle Lager Incoming Series, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Springboks – The Rugby Championship

Bjorn knows where the try-line is, he is a try-scoring machine, is great under the high balls both on the chase and defence but has one flaw and that is his defence under attacking play against a direct opponent. He will be the Bulls left wing starter.

 

Name: Akona Zilindlovu “Akona” Ndungane:

Position Right Wing
Height 1.83m
Weight 93kg
Date of Birth 20 February 1981
Place of Birth Mthatha
Provincial Debut 2003 for Mighty Elephants vs SWD
Provincial Caps 92
Provincial Points 235
Super Rugby Debut 2005 for Vodacom Bulls vs Cats
Super Rugby Caps 96
Super Rugby Points 160
Test Debut 15 July 2006 vs Wallabies in Brisbane
Test Caps 11 Test caps plus 2 Tour games
Test Points 5
Akona Ndungane

Akona Ndungane is the twin brother of former Springbok wing Odwa Ndungane from the Sharks and is a product of St. Patricks Primary School, Hudson Park High School and Eastern Cape Technicon.

He started his long career in 1999 for Border at Under 21 level and played for the Mighty Elephants senior sides in 2002 and 2003. In 2004 he played for the Bulldogs in Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup and also represented South Africa A in their Outgoing Tour in 2004.

He played with the Border Bulldogs in the Currie Cup, before he was loaned out to the Blue Bulls for two seasons from 2005. He was then bought outright by the Blue Bulls after the two strong seasons. In 2004 he was included in the Springbok Sevens side to compete at the IRB series in Bordeaux and London. In 2005 he made his Super 12 debut for the Bulls against the Cats.

Akona made the Springboks’ 2006 Tri Nations Series squad, was included in the Springboks’ 2007 Rugby World Cup squad, but was left out of the squad for the 2008 Tri-Nations Series. Among the players who got in ahead of him, was his twin brother Odwa.

It will be a decade of first class rugby for Ndungane, but he is ageing like a good red wine. He has not lost his uncanny ability to compete and contest balls in the air or to finish off half breaks. Ndungane’s chasing from kick-offs has become legendary and the Vodacom Bulls will again get 100% commitment and ability from this true professional.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 1999 – Border – Bankfin Under 21 Competion
  • 2002 – Mighty Elephants – Bankfin Under 21 Competition
  • 2003 – Mighty Elephants – Vodacom Shield, Mighty Elephants – ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Rounds, Mighty Elephants – ABSA Currie Cup First Division, Mighty Elephants – ABSA Reserve Division B
  • 2004 – Bulldogs – Vodacom Cup, Bulldogs – ABSA Currie Cup First Division, South Africa A – South Africa A Outgoing Tour
  • 2005 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super 12, Border Bulldogs – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round, Border Bulldogs – ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2006 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super 14, Springboks – Vodacom Tri-Nations, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Springboks – Vodacom Outgoing Tours
  • 2007 – Springboks – World Cup warm-up matches, Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super 14, Springboks – Vodacom Incoming Tours, Springboks – Vodacom Tri-Nations, Springboks – Vodacom Outgoing Tour, springboks – IRB Rugby World Cup 2007
  • 2008 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super 14, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2009 – Bulls – MTN test, Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super 14, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2010 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super 14, Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2011 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2012 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2013 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division

Akona is long in the tooth but still solid under the high ball in the chase and on defence, but maybe it’s time for a youngster to lift him out of the starting berth.

 

Name: Petrus Jürgen “Jürgen” Visser:

Position Fullback / Flyhalf
Height 1.91m
Weight 93kg
Date of Birth 13 September 1989
Place of Birth Paarl
Provincial Debut 2010 for Western Province
Provincial Caps 45
Provincial Points 92
Super Rugby Debut 2012 for Vodacom Bulls vs MTN Lions
Super Rugby Caps 11
Super Rugby Points 5
Test Debut
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Jurgen Visser

Jürgen Visser is a product of Vredendal Primary School and Paarl Gymnasium.

He started his career at Western Province at the 2007 Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week and stayed with Western Province through 2008, 2009 and 2010 where he played Under 19, Under 21 and Vodacom Cup rugby. In 2010 he also played for Maties in the Varsity Cup.

He made his move to the Blue Bulls in 2011 and played for Tuks in the Varsity Cup and the Blue Bulls in the Currie Cup Premier Division.

In 2012 he made his Super Rugby debut for the Bulls, played Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup Premir Division rugby and in 2013 also played for the Bulls in Super Rugby and in the ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 2007 – Western Province – U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2008 – Vodacom Western Province – ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2009 – Vodacom Western Province – ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Western Province – ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2010 – Maties – Varsity Cup, Western Province – Vodacom Cup
  • 2011 – Tuks – Varsity Cup, Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2012 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2013 – Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division

With Zane Kirchner having left for overseas, 2014 will be the year where Visser has the opportunity to make the Bulls fullback position his own and one hope he rises to the occasion as fullback is one of the positions I am worried about at the Bulls. He can help out at flyhalf in an emergency.

 

Name: Travis Keenan “Travis” Ismaiel:

Position Wing
Height 1.90m
Weight 94kg
Date of Birth 2 June 1992
Place of Birth Cape Town
Provincial Debut 2013  for Vodacom Blue Bulls vs Griquas
Provincial Caps 10
Provincial Points 35
Super Rugby Debut
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Travis Ismaiel

Travis Ismaiel is a product of Tygerberg High School and the University of Pretoria (Tuks).

He played for the Blue Bulls Under 19 team in the 2011 Under 19 Currie Cup competition and for the Blue Bulls Under 21 team in 2012 and 2013.

He was included in the SA Under 20 squad for the 2012 IRB Junior World Championship competition and made 1 appearance for them, in their pool stage match against Italy. He was also an unused substitute in the final against New Zealand.

He made his first class senior debut for the Blue Bulls in their opening match of the 2013 Vodacom Cup competition, starting their match against Griquas. He scored his first senior try a week later, when he dotted down in the 78th minute against the Pumas. He made 7 appearances in total in that competition, scoring 6 tries.

His Currie Cup debut came later in 2013, when he was included in the Blue Bulls starting team to face Western Province in the opening match of the 2013 Currie Cup Premier Division season.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 2011 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2012 – Vodacom Blue Bulls squad member – Vodacom Cup, South Africa – IRB Junior World Championship, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2013 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Tuks – Varsity Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division

Travis is a youngster who is probably still a year away from delivering his best rugby and did not overly impress for the Vodacom Blue Bulls in the ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division in 2013. He will have to step up if he wants Super Rugby game time.

 

Name: Sampie Mastriet:

Position Right Wing
Height 1.85m
Weight 89kg
Date of Birth 3 August 1990
Place of Birth Maraisdal
Provincial Debut 2011 for Vodacom Blue Bulls vs Boland in Vodacom Cup
Provincial Caps 34
Provincial Points 100
Super Rugby Debut 2013 for Vodacom Bulls
Super Rugby Caps 1
Super Rugby Points 5
Test Debut
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Sampie Mastriet

Sampie Mastriet is a product of Bonnievale Primary School, HTS Drostdy and University of Pretoria (Tuks).

After representing the Boland Cavaliers at several youth tournaments, he joined the Blue Bulls in 2010.

He made his senior team debut for the Vodacom Blue Bulls in the 2011 Vodacom Cup against his former team Boland Cavaliers. He made several appearances in this competition over the next 2 seasons and made his Currie Cup debut in the 2012 Currie Cup Premier Division against the Free State Cheetahs.

He also played for Tuks in the 2009 and 2010 Varsity Cup competitions.

In 2013, he was included in the squad for the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens and made 1 appearance for the Bulls in Super Rugby.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 2006 – Boland – U16 Coca Cola Grant Khomo Week
  • 2007 – Boland – U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2008 – Boland – U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, South Africa – U18 Elite Squads, Boland – ABSA U21 Promotion / Relegation
  • 2009 – Tuks – Varsity Cup, South Africa – IRB Junior World ChampionshipsVodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2010 – Tuks – Varsity Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls squad member – Vodacom Cup, South Africa – IRB Junior World Championships, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition, Vodacom Blue Bulls squad member – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2011 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2012 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2013 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Tuks – Varsity Cup, Vodacom Bulls – Vodacom Super Rugby, South Africa – IRB Rugby World Cup Sevens, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, South Africa – HSBC Sevens World Series (Gold Coast, Dubai & South Africa)
  • 2014 – South africa – HSBC Sevens World Series (Las Vegas USA)

He is a speedster with potential and plays mostly at right wing, one of the positions where the Bulls are thin at present, so he could make a name for himself in 2014.

 

Name: Clayton Blommetjies:

Position Wing / Fullback
Height 1.85m
Weight 87kg
Date of Birth 30 August 1990
Place of Birth Paarl
Provincial Debut 2010 for Vodacom Blue Bulls in Vodacom Cup
Provincial Caps 32
Provincial Points 40
Super Rugby Debut
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Clayton Blommetjies

Clayton Blommetjies is a product of Paarlzicht Primary School, New Orleans Senior Secondary School and University of Pretoria (Tuks).

After representing Boland Cavaliers at youth level, he joined the Blue Bulls in 2009.

He has made a total of 19 appearances in the Vodacom Cup and made his Currie Cup debut in the opening match of the 2012 Currie Cup Premier Division against Griquas.

Blommetjies was the outstanding back in the 2012 Varsity Cup and after good performances in the Under 19 and Under 21 sides of the Blue Bulls, make his presence felt in Currie Cup rugby in 2012. He again starred in the Varsity Cup and will look at 2013′s Currie Cup tournament as one to break into Super Rugby in 2014. He has represented Tuks in the Varsity Cup since 2009.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 2006 – Boland – U16 Coca Cola Grant Khomo Week
  • 2007 – Boland – U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2008 – Boland – U18 Academy Week, South Africa – U18 Elite Squads, South Africa – SA Schools Academy
  • 2009 – Tuks – Varsity Cup, South Africa – IRB Junior World Championships, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition, South Africa – SA Students, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2010 – Tuks – Varsity Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition, Vodacom Blue Bulls squad member – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2011 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2012 – Tuks – Varsity Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, South Africa – HSBC Sevens World Series (Glasgow & London), Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2013 – Tuks – Varsiy Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division

Claton is an exciting player and does some fabulous stuff one moment and some horrendous stuff the next moment, hopefully he can cut out the irratic stuff in 2014.

 

Name: Jesse Andre “Jesse” Kriel:

Position Fullback
Height 1.86m
Weight 95kg
Date of Birth 15 February 1994
Place of Birth Cape Town
Provincial Debut 2013 for Vodacom Blue Bulls in Vodacom Cup vs Golden Lions
Provincial Caps 3
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Jesse Kriel

Jesse Kriel is a product of Merchiston Primary School, Maritzburg College and University of Pretoria (Tuks).

He started his career at Kwazulu Natal in 2012 where he played in the Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week before being selected for South Africa at SA Schools level.

In 2013 he joined the Blue Bulls and Tuks and played Varsity Cup, Vodacom Cup and Under 19 and Under 21 rugby for the Blue Bulls. He also represented South Africa at the IRB Junior World Championship.

His playing career is as follows:

  • 2012 – KZN – U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, South Africa – SA schools U18
  • 2013 – Vodacom Blue Bulls – Vodacom Cup, Tuks – Varsity Cup, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 21 Competition, Vodacom Blue Bulls – ABSA Under 19 Competition

Jesse Kriel is a prodigious talent, with a bright future ahead and a meteoric rise is predicted for this kid.

 

Starters:

The Bulls should start with Bjorn Basson at No 11 (left wing), Akona Ndungane at No 14 (right wing) and Jürgen Visser at No 15 (fullback)… but that’s not exactly what I would do. I would have Bjorn at left wing, JJ Engelbrecht at right wing (and in JJ’s place on outside centre I would play William Small-Smith) and with Jürgen Visser at fullback.

Sampie Mastriet is also a good right wing prospect and I expect a rapid rise of Jesse Kriel at fullback. Clayton Blommetjies is a bit erratic at fullback. Travis Ismaiel is a bit light in the pants at this juncture.

 

This was the last Article in the series dealing with the Bulls and this article finally also conclude 40 articles describing the squad contenders of all 5 South African super Rugby franchises for 2014.

5 Responses to Super Rugby 2014: Bulls – Squad Contenders – Back Three

  • 1

    OK fellas, that was the 40th and last article on the SA Super Rugby squad contenders… and also the 129th Article here on Rugby-Talk already for 2014.

    It was damn hard work and you owe Timothy and me a few beers… hehehe

  • 2

    Now if only the Bulls back three can shine in 2014… hell I hope so!

  • 3

    Ek is nou so ver agter met alles hier op ons geliefde Rugby web blad. Ek sal myself n week verlof moet gee. Geen artikels gelee nie , nog nie op een van die Superbru poele aangesluit nie, wat het ek nog vergeet?
    Maar moenie worry nie ek gaan deel bly van hierdie wonderlike groep. GBS jy is n ster, dankie vir alles wat jy doen. Mistens weet ek waar ek alle nuus kan op “catch”
    Die ander wat hier help, dankie aan julle ook. Ek sal volstoom deelneem sodra ek kan of waneer n Ref weer akies maak. Disapproval

  • 4

    3 @ superBul:
    Jy’s so ver agter, jy’s omtrent loshande voor… hahaha

  • 5

    Goeie werk aan jou GBS en jou trawante, julle doen ‘n helse goeie werk om die webblad aan die gang te hou met al julle artiekels. Baie dankie vir al die moeite.


SAAAC


Bam Advert


Bornman Graphic