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Bulls ready to run against Chiefs

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Sportal.co.nz     27 Mar 2014     Getty Images

The Bulls are fresh from a win over the Sharks in the South African conference while the Chiefs suffered an upset loss to the Force in Perth en route to South Africa.

Bulls coach Frans Ludeke acknowledged how important continuity in selection was.

"We all know vital it is to keep continuity, especially when the team has had a good win, and to keep the combinations together," he said in announcing the only change was the return of Akona Ndungane to the wing after taking compassionate leave.

Stand-in captain Victor Matfield, who continues to lead the side while Flip van der Merwe is still suffering a hamstring strain, said there were always 'high-octane action' when South African teams played New Zealand sides.

That was down to the difference in playing philosophies more than anything else.

"When South African sides are playing each other, there is a lot of kicking.

"They almost don't want to give opportunities in their own half," he said.

"When you play New Zealand sides, they want to score tries so they go out there and play and it give you an opportunity to play as well."

The game against the Chiefs provides a timely reminder of that need as the Bulls head off for their Australasian tour after the game. They are due to play the Hurricanes, Highlanders, Waratahs and Force on their tour.

Ludeke said the focus for the moment was the Chiefs game.

"Next week will look after itself. Victory [against the Chiefs] is vital for us. We want to finish this phase well, as it's our last game at home before going on tour.

"We will need a huge effort in terms of work rate because the ball will be in play and there will be a lot of phases with a lot of tackles to be made to get the result," he said.