Jake White takes blame for Bulls’ horrid run
"For the first time as a group, we're probably under pressure, and it's different pressure to what we have experienced before."
Jake White says they are feeling the pressure as a union after a run of six matches without a win in all competitions. Picture: Lee Warren/Gallo Images
Western Province continued their winning start to the Currie Cup with a 41-33 win over the Bulls on Friday night. It was their second victory after beating the Lions in their opening match last weekend. For the Bulls, their search for a first victory in the Currie Cup continues.
Despite the loss, Bulls Currie Cup coach Edgar Marutlulle was pleased with certain aspects of the game, having led 33-25 at some stage in the second half.
“I think in most of the game we were really playing the better rugby with all the possession, we were dominating the contact and going forward.
“Just once again in terms of transition, a couple of lapses and probably just in the breakdown in transition, but I think we are really much improved. I think those transition moments cost us the game today,” said Marutlulle.
Winless in six games
The Bulls are winless in six games in all competitions, having last tasted victory in January against Exeter Chiefs in the Champions Cup and have conceded 104 points in the first two matches of the Currie Cup.
Bulls director of rugby Jake White says he takes responsibility for the horror run and that he should be held accountable for another loss and not Marutlulle.
“The reason I’m here as director of rugby is that this week I basically took this group of players. I wanted to use it as an opportunity for next week, so that’s why it would be unfair for Edgar to take on the negativity of this result,” he said.
‘What’s gone wrong?’
“It’s no excuse. I’m trying to reflect and be philosophical about where we are as a group.
“We’ve been dominating as a union for the last three seasons – juniors, seniors, Currie Cup, URC final – and I think, what’s gone wrong?
“The answer for me is I was sick in December, and again it’s not an excuse, and I was probably a little bit disconnected from the group.
“I thought changing the group and the team and giving some guys time off last year was just too tough for everybody to back up every week, as much as it worked when we played Wednesdays and Saturdays towards the back end of the year.
“For the first time as a group, we’re probably under pressure, and it’s different pressure to what we have experienced before. We’ve just got to make sure we get through this. It doesn’t mean it’s going to change in one week, but we just have to get through it as a union.
“I’m the guy in charge and I have to make decisions, and most of the decisions I have made over the last couple of years have worked in our favour.”