Date Time Competition Season
2 April 2022 1:00 pm United Rugby Championship 2021/22

Match Report

Bulls ensured back-to-back losses for Ulster

Ulster suffered back-to-back defeats for the first time this season as a second-half blitz from the Vodacom Bulls saw them fall to a 34-16 loss at Loftus Versfeld Stadium.

Scores from former Ulster flanker Marcell Coetzee, Madosh Tambwe, Johan Grobbelaar and Kurt-Lee Arendse helped the South Africans to a bonus-point success, which also condemned Dan McFarland's side to a winless tour of the southern hemisphere.

The visitors had led at half-time through three penalties from Nathan Doak, but the heat and high altitude in Pretoria played a significant factor after the break, as did a yellow card to Ulster lock Kieran Treadwell just before Grobbelaar's try.

Doak notched his first penalty in the 10th minute, but they perhaps would have been disappointed they didn't have a try to show for their efforts after three line-outs just five metres from the Bulls line.

Chris Smith then levelled proceedings with his only penalty of the half, but the Irish province would lead by six points at the interval as Doak converted two more penalties, although he would miss one more on the stroke of half-time.

And after the restart the Bulls would assume control. Coetzee got them on the board when he charged through a ruck and over for a try, and then Tambwe capitalised on some inaccurate passing from the Ulster backs to go over in the corner to put them beyond a score.

Luke Marshall then made things interesting when he was sent over thanks to an excellent delayed flat pass from Ian Madigan to bring Ulster back within seven, but the TMO's intervention would swing momentum back against the Irish province.

Treadwell caught Arendse on the chin, despite it looking like he'd hit the ball first, which led to him seeing yellow and that allowed Grobbelaar to put the result beyond any doubt when he piloted the maul over the line off the line-out that resulted from the penalty.

Coetzee also saw yellow for a high tackle on Ben Moxham, which gave Ulster a glimmer of hope, but instead the Bulls would wrap up their bonus point when Arendse picked off a Doak pass and ran it the length of the pitch for the fourth try.

Vodacom Bulls

15Kurt-Lee Arendse Full-Back 75'
14Canan Moodie Winger
13Cornal Hendricks Centre
12Harold Vorster Centre
11Madosh Tambwe Winger 55'
10Chris Smith 22 Fly-Half 44', 56'
24', 52'
9Zak Burger 21 Scrum-Half
1Gerhard Steenekamp 17 Prop
2Johan Grobbelaar Hooker 65'
3Mornay Smith 18 Prop
4WJ Steenkamp Lock
5Ruan Nortje Lock
6Marcell Coetzee Flanker 43'
7Cyle Brink 20 Flanker
8Elrigh Louw No. 8
16Joe Van Zyl
17Simphiwe Matanzima 1 Prop
18Robert Hunt 3
19Reinhardt Ludwig Lock
20Arno Botha 7 No. 8
21Keagan Johannes 9
22Morne Steyn 10 66', 75'
23Lionel Mapoe Centre


15Michael Lowry Full-Back
14Ben Moxham Winger
13James Hume Centre
12Luke Marshall Centre 64'
11Ethan McIlroy 23 Winger
10Ian Madigan Fly-Half
9Nathan Doak 21 Scrum-Half 64'
10', 31', 36'
1Andrew Warwick 17 Prop
2Bradley Roberts 16 Hooker
3Marty Moore Prop
4Kieran Treadwell Lock
5Iain Henderson Lock
6Jordi Murphy 22 Flanker
7Nick Timoney Flanker
8Duane Vermeulen 20 No. 8
16Tom Stewart 2 Hooker
17Eric O’Sullivan 1 Prop
18Tom O’Toole 23 Prop
19Mick Kearney Lock
20Matty Rea 8 No. 8
21John Cooney 9 Scrum-Half
22Marcus Rea 6 Flanker
23Stewart Moore 18 Centre


Loftus Versfeld
Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Kirkness Street, Arcadia, Tshwane Ward 92, Pretoria, City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, Gauteng, 0083, South Africa