Vodacom Bulls’ explosive hooker, Johan Grobbelaar, has promised a “lekker” vibe at Loftus Versfeld this weekend when his team faces Ulster Rugby in a Vodacom United Rugby Championship classic clash on Saturday afternoon.
The Tshwane-based side is on a drive to attract 25 000 spectators to the stadium which would mark the match as the biggest sporting event in South Africa over the past two years and, in the process, beat the 2021/22 Vodacom URC crowd attendance record of over 19 000 which was set when the Vodacom Bulls visited Aviva Stadium in Ireland to play Leinster Rugby.
“We want to call on all the fans, near and far, to please come out to support us this weekend. The support really makes a big difference,” said Grobbelaar.
Vodacom Bulls director of rugby, Jake White, took it upon himself earlier in the week to give back to rugby fanatics when he committed to reducing ticket prices for the weekend’s top-class match to start at just R25 a ticket.
“There will be a lekker vibe at the stadium. The tickets, at R25, will be much cheaper this weekend. It would be so great for us to see as many people as possible,” added Grobbelaar, who believes a big crowd will add to the team’s motivation when they run onto the field on Saturday afternoon.
Part of the vibe the fiery hooker is referring to is the entertainment that will come in the 80 minutes on the field.
Despite the predicted heat in Tshwane on Saturday, the altitude and the vocal Loftus crowd – add to that the four back-to-back victories from their previous matches – the Vodacom Bulls are under no disillusion that the encounter against the Irish giants will be tough opposition.
“I do believe that we will be better prepared for the heat. They are probably happier in wet conditions. So, we are looking forward to a sunny day. Hopefully we can run the ball a bit,” said “Grobbies”, as he is affectionately known.
“They are a great side, and they are currently second on the log, so this is another massive week for us. This is our fourth home game in a row now, we are really looking forward to it. It’s a big challenge, one we see as a test match.
“It’s easy to fall into a trap and believe that the overseas teams will come here, and the altitude will make a difference, and there’s the heat and kick-off at two o’clock. So, it is important that we do not become complaisant, and we still pitch for the game.
“Hopefully, we can pull it through and get another home win. We want to notch up a lot of games being unbeaten at Loftus. Hopefully we can build on that
The festivities at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday will include a curtain-raiser match at 11h30 between the Vodacom Bulls Under-20’s and their counterparts from the Toyota Cheetahs which is a crucial match for the SA Rugby U20 Cup. There will also be a full beer garden on the Loftus D-field which will have plenty of entertainment for both young and old, with a kiddies entertainment area on offer before and after the Vodacom URC game.
The match between the Vodacom Bulls and Ulster Rugby will kick-off at 14h00.