Bulls get Fourie boost

Fourie du Preez returns to the Bulls’ starting line-up to face the Brumbies.

Du Preez missed the match against the Highlanders a fortnight ago with a hand injury and started on the bench against the Waratahs last Saturday but has recovered to start, with Francois Hougaard on the bench.

There were fears that JP Nel and Bryan Habana wouldn’t be available due to injury, but both have been cleared to play. There was no such luck for Derick Hougaard though. The flyhalf developed an abscess on his buttock which turned septic in the last two days – forcing him to miss Saturday’s match. Morné Steyn starts at flyhalf with Vodacom Cup No 10 Burton Francis providing cover on the bench.

There is still no place for Springboks Danie Rossouw and Pedrie Wannenburg, with Wilhelm Steenkamp and Deon Stegmann preferred at lock and flank respectively.

Meanwhile it has emerged that Brumbies players Stirling Mortlock and Adam Ashley-Cooper have been in quarantine for the last 36 hours. The duo are suffering from a suspected gastric virus contracted in Cape Town.

Bulls - Zane Kirchner, Akona Ndungane, JP Nel, Wynand Olivier, Bryan Habana, Morné Steyn, Fourie du Preez (captain), Pierre Spies, Wikus van Heerden, Deon Stegmann, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Bakkies Botha, Werner Kruger, Derick Kuün, Gurthro Steenkamp.
Subs: Bandise Maku, Rayno Gerber, Jaco Engels, Danie Rossouw, Francois Hougaard, Burton Francis, Pedrie Wannenburg.