Date: May 03 2012
AAMI Park, Melbourne, Saturday 7.40pm (AEST)
Last meeting: Round 13 2011 - Bulls 47 bt Rebels 10 at Loftus Versfeld
Head-to-head: Played 1 Rebels 0 Bulls 1
In Melbourne: N/A
Referee: Andrew Lees (AUS)
TV: Live, FoxSports 3
TAB Sportsbet: Rebels $5.25 Bulls $1.14
Greg Growden writes: Danny Cipriani was in tears telling his Rebels teammates he was going home, but their fans shouldn't be too distressed. The Rebels backline will look better without him, with his defensive liabilities putting too much pressure on those around him. Still Bulls by plenty.
AAP writes: Amid a string of changes, Kurtley Beale moves into the No.10 hot seat for the Rebels in what will be an early audition for the Wallabies playmaking role for the June Test series against Wales. Danny Cipriani's return to England and James O'Connor's sickening collision with Berrick Barnes has forced the move but Beale has the goods to be the attacking spark to make the most of any quality possession Melbourne's forwards can gain off the big Bulls pack. The South Africans are in form, just two points off top of the table, fresh following a bye and full of confidence. Flanker Jarrod Saffy is a major loss for the Rebels but a welcome morale-booster is the return of captain Stirling Mortlock for his first appearance of the year off the bench.
REBELS: Julian Huxley, Mark Gerrard, Mitch Inman, Lachlan Mitchell, Cooper Vuna, Kurtley Beale, Nick Phipps, Gareth Delve, Tim Davidson, Luke Jones, Hugh Pyle, Cadeyrn Neville, Rod Blake, Ged Robinson, Nic Henderson. Reserves: Adam Freier, Jono Owen, Al Campbell, Ryan Hodson, Richard Kingi, James Hilgendorf, Stirling Mortlock.
BULLS: Zane Kirchner, Akona Ndungane, JJ Engelbrecht, Wynand Olivier, Bjorn Basson, Morne Steyn, Francois Hougaard, Pierre Spies, Jacques Potgieter, CJ Stander, Juandre Kruger, Flip van der Merwe, Werner Kruger, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Dean Greyling.
Reserves: Willie Wepener, Frik Kirsten, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Arno Botha, Jano Vermaak, Louis Fouché, Johann Sadie.
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