Cornal Hendricks, 34, has seen almost everything in rugby

Cornal Hendricks, 34, has seen almost everything in rugby

Cornal Hendricks, 34, has virtually experienced it all on a rugby field.

However, despite the Bulls making it all the way to the United Rugby Championship (URC) final last year, the utility back is still smarting from a defeat to Edinburgh in Scotland.

“I’m looking forward to Edinburgh since our previous encounter with them didn’t go well because we lost. But anticipating that, playing them at two o’clock will make it particularly heated.

Prior to Saturday’s rematch with the Scottish team, the seasoned wing said after practise at Loftus Versfeld, “I believe we owe them one! (2.30pm kick-off).

“The game is played differently in Europe and South Africa. We have athletes with strength and size as well as talent. They are also physically strong, but they excel in technical and aerial areas as well.

“I believe that their foreign players contribute to the success of their team, therefore if we can bring the physicality of South Africa, we will be successful.

The Bulls took the brunt of Welsh referee Ben Whitehouse’s whistle during their 17-10 loss to Edinburgh at the DAM Heath Stadium in October.

Madosh Tambwe’s late disallowed try may have brought about a 17-17 tie, but it was not to be because referee Whitehouse believed the Bulls wing committed a double movement while reaching over, and he also harshly penalised the South African team at the breakdowns.

As a result, the Pretoria team would want to avoid any issue by dominating with the forwards to give the backs, like Hendricks, a chance to shine on Saturday after an ineffective attack in the 31-15 victory against the Lions the week before.

“We constantly claim we will dominate the game at our speed, but we always want to pursue tempo. This weekend, too, we aim to pursue speed, Hendricks, who scored a try at Ellis Park last Saturday, added.

“The squad has a lot of optimism, and it has terrific energy. We want to make it lively each week, and we are also bringing back guys from the national team. Players want to be selected on weekends as we create a solid team.

“Johan (Goosen), who could be chosen to play flyhalf this week, provides a unique flavour to the squad, is really energised, and improves the image of players like myself and David (Kriel, inside centre).

“Winning the first game of the year is usually a wonderful thing. The preseason went well for the boys, and we worked hard to improve. We also gained knowledge from the previous season.

“Playing at the Lions is never easy, but we kept the ball alive. We do a lot of things in practise that the players put into practise when playing.

Therefore, we are thrilled to be completing the tasks we worked on over the week.

»Cornal Hendricks, 34, has seen almost everything in rugby«

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