for quality writing

Ken Borland

Setter of goals Jake says he is content with two successive wins 0

Posted on February 28, 2022 by Ken

As head coach and one of the chief setters of goals for the Bulls, Jake White said he was content with their two successive United Rugby Championship wins over the Lions, although he felt they missed a golden opportunity for another bonus point in their 21-13 win at Loftus Versfeld at the weekend.

After a torrid first quarter, the Bulls look set to repeat their 34-10 triumph at Ellis Park a week ago when they stormed into a 21-6 lead after 49 minutes. But mistakes and a creaking scrum continued to plague their performance and they failed to add to their score as the gutsy Lions fought their way back into the game.

“I said to the players that if I had been offered nine points in two matches against the Lions in two weeks then I would have taken that based on where we were,” White said.

“We had to find a way to jump up the log. But we had enough chances to get the bonus point again, but we just couldn’t score again. Which was not ideal because we had set it up nicely.

“But the rain came when we had gone from 6-0 down to 21-6 up, which meant we went 21-0 in the middle block of the game, so you can’t be too upset, we were doing something right.

“I’m not satisfied that we didn’t get the bonus point, but we also can’t be arrogant. Two weeks ago we were under pressure and now we have nine more points against a Lions side that beat the Stormers in the Cape,” White pointed out.

The former Springbok coach also said that the Lions were adept at using the black arts to further frustrate his side.

“The Lions did a very good job of making the game as scrappy as possible, they were off their feet, not rolling away, hands in. And it worked because they got close to getting the result,” White said.

“But we are going to play games like this again, when the referee’s interpretations are different, and you’ve got to find ways to win when you’re under the pump.

“You’ve got to be good enough to adapt to whatever happens. And so many things happened. We just want consistency, but the same situations are being seen differently. There’s no common sense.

“But we have to be good enough to take the referee out of the equation,” White said.

McKenzie back & Maketa & Conrad appointed as chief breeders of talent 0

Posted on September 11, 2020 by Ken

While Neil McKenzie will return to South African cricket as a batting coach, the appointment of Malibongwe Maketa and Shukri Conrad as the chief breeders of talent for the Proteas will arguably have an even greater effect as director of cricket Graeme Smith announced his high performance management team on Thursday.

McKenzie, who played 58 Tests and 64 ODIs for the Proteas, is the new batting lead and while this means he will replace Jacques Kallis as the batting consultant for the national team, his appointment is a full-time one and he will work with batsmen at all levels of the pipeline.

Conrad, as the new SA U19 men’s lead, and Maketa, who is now the full-time South Africa A and National Academy lead, have been given key roles in that pipeline.

Maketa was a Proteas assistant coach from 2017-2019 as well as enjoying a successful time in charge of the Eastern Cape Warriors, so the 39-year-old knows exactly what is required for talented cricketers to progress through the system. He told The Citizen on Thursday that he sees himself as the go-between for the Proteas management and the franchise coaches.

“They are two very important roles and fortunately I’ll have a lot of highly qualified coaches around me as we try to prepare cricketers for both the franchises and the Proteas. The Academy is there to empower the players with skills and I will be assisting them with their game-plans and execution. It’s great to be back in a full-time role with Cricket South Africa.

“I’ll be looking to assist Mark Boucher and Enoch Nkwe in creating a bigger base for the Proteas and my contract runs concurrently with their’s. It’s also about monitoring and identifying talent and lending a hand to the franchise coaches, making sure we are all speaking the same language, from Graeme, Mark and Enoch to the franchises. I intend to get my hands dirty and throw lots of balls,” Maketa said.

Conrad, a vastly-experienced coach who has been heading up the National Academy, will now take over the crucial U19 programme.

“I’ve loved every minute of it at the academy and I know what is required to get to those levels as I now get involved earlier in the pipeline. The U19s are a great challenge because it is such an important stage in development and South African cricket as a whole. The challenge is to ensure we give every young cricketer every opportunity to play and perform.

“Excellence in coaching is critical at provincial and school level, and schools have a massive role to play. I would like to work together with them, private coaches and the Hubs and RPC coaches because we have been in our silos for far too long. Plus we have a scouting system and a wonderful database run by John Bailey and Niels Momberg to ensure nobody falls through the cracks,” Conrad said.

Other appointments confirmed on Thursday were those of Eddie Khoza as the Acting Head of Cricket Pathways, Vincent Barnes as the High-Performance Bowling Lead, Dinesha Devnarain as the Women’s SA U19 and National Academy Head Coach, and Dr Shuaib Manjra as the Chief Medical Officer. Follwing the rather dilly stink created over the appointment of certain consultants, these announcements should be sweet-smelling for the majority of SA cricket fans. They all have considerable amounts to add to the high performance programme.

Handling & defence chief concerns for Nollis 2

Posted on March 27, 2017 by Ken


Handling errors and poor defence were the chief concerns of Bulls coach Nollis Marais following their dismal display in Albany which saw them being belted 38-14 by the Blues at the weekend.

Despite having their fair share of possession and shading the territory battle, the Bulls were outscored by six tries to two and fell apart badly in the second half after going into the break level at 7-7.

“We were very competitive in the first half but we didn’t take our chances in the second half. We made too many errors with our handling and we couldn’t convert from the lineout. We gave them too many opportunities and obviously the defence is definitely a concern.

“We conceded too many points in the second half and we will have to look at that, re-visit our defence,” Marais said.

The Bulls allowed 13 linebreaks and missed 24 tackles against the Blues, and have now conceded 17 tries in four matches.

The Blues had won just one of their four matches prior to their meeting with the Bulls, who now face far tougher opposition in the form of the unbeaten Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.

“There will definitely be one or two changes to the team, but we’re not going to change structurally, we have to make sure everything is in place for next Saturday,” the coach said.

The scrums were perhaps the only area where the Bulls did themselves justice.

“It was a great performance in the scrums, Trevor Nyakane did really well at tighthead, and we were dominant there, so that was a very good positive,” Marais said.

“But we didn’t take our chances in the second half, we wasted too many opportunities. A couple of times we were in their 22 but we didn’t convert that into points either.”


  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • Thought of the Day

    Don’t be so busy – even working for God – that you don’t have regular quiet time. Don’t let your activities become more important than your time with the Father. You can be alive ‘for’ God without experiencing the presence and power of the living Christ.

    “Attempting to serve the Lord without the strength of the Holy Spirit results in frustration and ultimate disaster.

    “If your vision of him grows dim, your service will become powerless and ineffective. This will happen if your spiritual reserves are not regularly replenished through prayer and meditation.

    “You must put him first in all your activities. Your service for him must be the result of your intimate knowledge of him. Only when he enjoys priority in all things, can you understand life from his perspective. Putting Christ first in your life and work makes you a more capable servant of God.” – A Shelter From The Storm, Solly Ozrovech

↑ Top