Robbie Diack may lack experience at this level, but his recent comments about the Vodacom Blue Bulls pack indicate that he is not short of confidence.
The Vodacom Western Province eighth man spoke openly about the Bulls forwards and how the men from Pretoria shouldn’t have much of an advantage in Saturday’s game.
“Don’t get me wrong, it will be an incredible challenge,” the powerful back-rower told Keo.co.za, “but I think that we should be able to stand up to them.
“Last week everybody thought that the Sharks would destroy us in the forwards, but the Sharks pack were the ones often on the back foot.”
The Bulls stuttered against the Valke in their opening game at Loftus Versfeld, but have since looked a more composed and cohesive unit. Pedrie Wannenburg, who has played for the Springboks this year, has been particularly dominant in the loose.
WP may not have the most experienced back row, but captain Luke Watson, Justin Melck and Diack have done well for Province at the breakdown in the first two games. Diack is one that looks forward to meeting Wannenburg in contact on Saturday.
“He’s a brilliant Springbok player, but I believe that I can match up to him,” Diack said. “I handled AJ Venter last week, and he is one of the best number eights going around. If I can handle AJ, I don’t see why I can’t handle Pedrie.”
In the tight-loose, the WP team will try to limit the momemtum of the Bulls maul. The tight five will remain the Bulls strength, and it appears that with the injury to Attie Winter, WP should struggle at scrum-time. Diack disagrees once again, talking up the young tighthead Brok Harris.
“Brok is just as good as Attie,” he confirmed. “We’ve lost some players to injury but we have great depth in the squad.”
By Jon Cardinelli