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Ken Borland


Nollis looks to shield Bulls from public expectation

Posted on February 25, 2016 by Ken

 

Bulls coach Nollis Marais acknowledges that public expectation will be high when his new-look team start their SuperRugby campaign against the Stormers in Cape Town this weekend, but he wants to shield his team from those pressures.
“It’s time for the new blood to step up and they can learn from the guys who have played SuperRugby before. But I don’t want them to get caught up in the emotion of a Western Province versus Bulls game, we need to make sure that we are level-headed and don’t allow them to dictate how we play. I want the guys to just play, it’s going to be a big game but we must just look forward to it.
“As a coach, you always want to win trophies, but at the moment our aim is just to make the playoffs first,” Marais said.
And while most of the attention has been focused on the exciting Bulls backline and the major blow that is the loss of flyhalf Handre Pollard to injury, Marais said his attention has been on ensuring his team has a good set-piece.
“You need solid set-pieces to play any sort of attacking rugby. You have to at least win your own ball, to give yourself an attacking platform, sometimes it’s the only way to generate momentum.
“Handre is obviously a big loss because he brings a brand of attacking and physical play to flyhalf. But I used Tian Schoeman for the whole Currie Cup and he’s a good talent. Francois Brummer has been through the mill and they need to step up. But we can’t expect them to be Handre Pollard, they just need to be themselves,” Marais added.

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