Blue Bulls hammer Pumas to stay on track for play-offs
The Blue Bulls kept their chance of reaching the Currie Cup play-offs alive with a 47-12 victory over the Pumas in Pretoria on Friday.
The home-side got full points out of the match as they scored six tries to the two of the Pumas.
Despite giving good resistance, the Pumas found themselves behind the goalposts after five minutes of play after Bulls lock Flip van der Merwe powered his way over the try line.
Bulls flyhalf Louis Fouche opened his account with the conversion, and then a penalty seven minutes later to give his side a 10-point lead.
The visitors made a few threatening runs but could not pierce the Bulls' defences for the first quarter of the match.
It was only after Fouche's third successful kick at goal that the Pumas managed to score their first try of the match.
Pumas eighthman Doppies le Roux caught the Bulls unaware on their 22 metre line, as he took a quick tap then offloaded to Jaco Bouwer who broke through a few tackles to score, with Coenie van Wyk converting.
The Bulls hit back a minute later when Fouche scored from his own chip kick over the Pumas defenders. In the last line of defence for the Pumas Shaun Venter was beaten by the bounce of the ball with Fouche collecting and scoring.
The pivot then converted his try to give his side a 14 point lead.
With 11 minutes left in the first half, standout loose forward CJ Stander scored the Bulls' third try of the match.
Fouche added a further penalty for a 28-7 halftime lead to the Bulls.
The problems for the Pumas in the second half continued as they were awarded two yellow cards shortly after each other.
Prop Ashley Buys was first to get his marching orders in the 53rd minute, which was followed by the Bulls' bonus point try a minute later, with centre Francois Venter scoring, and Fouche converting.
Six minutes later Pumas lock Boela Serfontein joined Buys in the sin bin for a high tackle which also led to a try for the Bulls.
This time around it was replacement loose forward Arno Botha who scored his five-pointer after a solid drive by the forwards.
With the Pumas clearly rattled, Bjorn Basson intercepted a long pass from Van Wyk to sprint through for his side's sixth try to take the score to 47-7.
The Pumas received some consolation when lock Marius Coetzer stretched over the line to add five points to his side's score.
Blue Bulls - 47 (28) Tries: Flip van der Merwe, Louis Fouche, CJ Stander, Francois Venter, Arno Botha, Bjorn Basson. Conversions: Louis Fouche (4). Penalties: Fouche (3)
Pumas - 12 (7) Tries: Jaco Bouwer, Marius Coetzer. Conversion: Coenie van Wyk.