South Africa A‚ or shadow Bok team‚ to play the Bulls
They have left it until the 11th hour but SA Rugby has confirmed South Africa A’s clash against the Bulls as part of a double-header at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.
In playing the Bulls‚ South Africa A‚ or a shadow Springbok team‚ will now get a final tune-up ahead of the start the Test series next weekend against the British & Irish Lions.
The SA A team’s clash against the Bulls will be a curtain raiser to the B & I Lions’ tour match against the Stormers.
SA A will kick off at 1pm against the Bulls‚ while the match between the Stormers and the touring Lions will take place at the scheduled 6pm.
“We’ve been looking at options to get the Springboks an additional match to help with their preparations for the Tests‚ as well as an opportunity for the Bulls to be part of the series‚ and we’re very grateful that this game will take place‚” said Jurie Roux‚ chief executive of SA Rugby.
The Bulls were originally scheduled to play a Currie Cup match against Griquas in Kimberley but that match was cancelled.
“It’s obviously not what we had planned when the fixtures were first scheduled‚ but due to the pandemic the situation is very fluid. Having said that‚ a double-header in Cape Town on Saturday is certainly something to look forward to and we’d like to thank everyone involved in making it a reality.”
SA Rugby director of rugby Rassie Erasmus who was keen for the SA A team to again play the B & I Lions on Saturday was pleased nonetheless to have an additional fixture following the cancellation of the Springboks’ second Test against Georgia last weekend.
“We want to be as well prepared as possible when we meet the British & Irish Lions‚ and this additional match offers us an invaluable opportunity to work on our structures‚ while at the same time offering the players an opportunity to stake a claim for places in the Test team‚” Erasmus said.
“We had hoped for three matches in the build-up to the Test series‚ and the match against the Bulls means we will get exactly that before we line up against the tourists.
“The Series is a massive occasion for players and for rugby fans as it only comes around every 12 years‚ and it is vital that we are as well prepared as possible when we run onto the field.”
SA Rugby cautioned both fixtures are subject to final PCR testing for the Stormers squad on Saturday morning.