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25 YEARS – AND OVER | SUPER RUGBY’S DEMISE LEAVES BULLS AS SA’S ONLY WINNERS

PHOTO CREDIT - GALLO IMAGES

While Super Rugby may be dead in the water, MyTwoCents is saluting the Bulls who will forever remain SA’s only ever winners of the tournament.

Kicking off back in 1996, 25 editions later of the southern hemisphere tournament and it’s no more (well, 24, if you discount this year’s tournament which was curtailed by Covid-19 and had no winner).

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It goes without saying that New Zealand’s sides have dominated the tournament over its quarter of a century existence.

Of the 24 completed tournaments, New Zealand sides have won 17 – or 71%

All 5 of New Zealand’s sides tasted success, with the Crusaders (10), Blues (3), Chiefs (2), Highlanders and Hurricanes (1 each) all emerging victorious.

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Australian sides have shared 4 wins – between the Brumbies (2), Reds (1) and Waratahs (1).

The remaining three wins came from South Africa – and the Bulls account for all those successes.

The men from Pretoria reigned supreme in 2007, 2009 and 2010.

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In 2007, the Bulls beat the Sharks 20-19 in Durban. It was a heart-breaking defeat for the home side who saw Bulls wing Bryan Habana score a try in injury time and flyhalf Derrick Hougaard land the match-winning conversion.

In 2009, in Pretoria, the Bulls dominated an out-classed Chiefs side, winning 61-17. That scoreline remains the highest score in a final (61 points) and the biggest margin of victory (44 points).

The Bulls defended their title in 2010, beating the Stormers 25-17 at the Orlando Stadium as Loftus Versfeld was unavailable due to the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

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While the Bulls boast a perfect 3-0 record in Super Rugby finals, the rest of South African teams haven’t fared nearly as well.

The Sharks are 0-4 having lost in the showpiece match in 1996, 2001, 2007 and 2012.

The Lions lost a ‘hat-trick’ of finals from 2016-2018, while the Stormers lost their only final (in 2010).

PICTURE | HANDRE POLLARD GIVES THUMBS-UP IN PHOTO FROM HOSPITAL BED

Written by Garrin Lambley

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