Cape Town – While the Cheetahs have tremendous speed throughout their team, the big question for them this weekend is how do they tackle Duane Vermeulen?
That will be one of their main challenges when they host the Bulls in today’s Super Rugby Unlocked clash in Bloemfontein. Vermeulen missed last week’s 30-23 win over Griquas, but has recovered sufficiently from a bump to the knee to captain the Bulls at the Free State Stadium.
He will bring much-needed leadership and direction to a Bulls pack that perhaps underestimated an unheralded Griquas outfit, and were caught out a few times by the fiery approach from the Kimberley-based team.
And Vermeulen knows what’s coming, having played a few seasons for the Cheetahs before moving to the Stormers in 2007.
“I can’t really say I had a good rest, as we had to take good care of the knee and get the swelling down. But at this very moment, we are happy with where we are, and I can play on Friday,” the Springbok No 8 said.
“I played two years for the Cheetahs, and it was a fantastic time in my career. But I have come up against them in the past, so I am kind of used to playing against them. I know that they will be really pumped up to play the Bulls.
“Griquas came out with a massive bang and put us on the back foot. But there was a lot of character shown by the players to pull the win out of the hat at the end. We’ve got a plan on how we want to play the Cheetahs, and obviously you have to execute that plan. This past Saturday, we didn’t really execute the plan to perfection, and then you are going to see yourself behind your posts.”