After the good rugby the Bulls played in their loss against the Chiefs last week, they will fancy their chances of doing the unthinkable.
The Bulls have never won a Super Rugby game in Christchurch.
And it will be that very fact that coach John Mitchell will use to inspire his team to do the impossible when they face the Crusaders in the heart of New Zealand’s south island tomorrow morning.
Having never registered a win against the Crusaders at home could easily be a daunting task for Mitchell’s men but after the good rugby they played in their loss against the Chiefs last week, the men from Pretoria will fancy their chances of doing the unthinkable.
Mitchell will certainly tap into the impressive and dominant rugby his team played in the first stanza in Hamilton and over and above demanding a repeat performance for 80 minutes this time around, the Bulls will want to capitalise on the Crusaders dip in form after losing two matches in a row.
Much of the Bulls turnaround in playing style and running approach to the game has been credited to Mitchell and he will want to end of the tour, where they have lost two games already, with a victory to affirm the progress his team have made.
There will be no better place to do so than in Christchurch against the defending champions who look extremely vulnerable on the back of their recent results.
But Mitchell remains wary of how ruthless the Crusasders can be at home and aside from seeking redemption for their losses, they will also find inspiration from the return of influential All Blacks and captain Sam Whitelock and vice-captain Ryan Crotty.
“I have no idea why (we haven’t won in Christchurch), but feel it is an extremely exciting opportunity to meet that standard and play above it against the best in the competition,” Mitchell said after naming his side yesterday.
The Bulls also won’t be lacking in motivation with in-form Springbok centre Jesse Kriel looking to make his 50th Super Rugby appearance for the three time champions a memorable for the right reasons.