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By Athenkosi Tsotsi

Sports Reporter

Sharks will now come to Loftus a confident team, says Bulls’ Jaco van der Walt

Both the Bulls and Sharks picked up big wins in the previous round of matches.

Bulls flyhalf Jaco van der Walt says they are in for a tough battle when they take on the Sharks in a United Rugby Championship match at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday (3 pm).

Both teams head into the game on the back of impressive wins in the URC; the Bulls dispatched Connacht 53-27, while the Sharks defeated the Dragons 69-14.

One of the reasons why Van der Walt says the Bulls are anticipating a hard encounter against the men from Durban is because of the visiting team’s Springbok contingent, namely Lukhanyo Am, Eben Etzebeth, Ox Nche, Lukhanyo Am, Makazole Mapimpi, Grant Williams, and Jaden Hendrikse.

The Bulls have started the season well and have good momentum, however, they know getting a win over a Boks-laden Sharks team will be a huge task.

Confident Sharks

“We need to get a win this weekend. You need to get results against teams like the Sharks … that would give us confidence for the next coming weeks,” Van der Walt told the media.

“It’s going to be a tough one against the Sharks. They did well this past weekend.

“They are a good team, you can’t underestimate the Sharks; they have good individual players, so they are going to come out hard.

“They have a lot of experience in the team … several players who’ve just come back from the World Cup. I think they are full of confidence, and they’ll look to show it on the weekend.”

Flyhalf competition

Van der Walt, who previously played for the Lions in South Africa before moving to Scotland where he ran out for Edinburgh, delivered a man-of-the-match performance in the Bulls’ win against Connacht, his best showing since joining the Pretoria-based side.

The competition with Johan Goosen and Chris Smith for the No 10 jersey has pushed Van der Walt to work harder.

“There’s a lot of depth in the squad, and I think it makes a big difference for you as a player because you work harder than normal,” he said.

“You need that competition between the players. Hopefully, we all get a bit of game time, the season is long, and there is going to be rotation,” he said.