Duo banned for Bulls
Bulls duo banned in further blow for Super 14 champions.
Last Updated: March 4, 2008 10:25am
The Bulls have been hit with a double blow after centre JP Nel and prop Jaco Engels were both suspended following a disciplinary hearing.
Both men will miss Friday's Super 14 derby clash with the Lions after they were found guilty of foul play and given bans of one and three games.
Both players attended a disciplinary hearing on Monday evening in Pretoria after being cited during Saturday's 15-29 loss against the Sharks.
Engels was suspended for three weeks because of his punch on Sharks skipper Johann Muller, while Nel was given a one-match ban for a dangerous (spear) tackle on full-back Frans Steyn.
Last week, Nel was also cited after the Crusaders match with a swinging arm offence, but was not found guilty.
That means Engels will not be allowed to play against the Lions, Reds and Chiefs whilst Nel will only miss Friday's derby clash with their South African neighbours.
The defending Super 14 champions now face more problems after losing coach Heyneke Meyer and captain Victor Matfield during the off-season.
New Bulls coach Frans Ludeke did confirm on Monday on the Bulls website that both Bryan Habana and Bakkies Botha were available for selection again, although that duo are short of match practice.
The Bulls desperately need a win after losing consecutive home matches to the Crusaders and Sharks.
Botha had to withdraw from squad the day before the Sharks match because the ankle injury he picked up on the Springboks' end of year tour was still not 100 percent. Habana sustained a rib injury in the first round match against the Stormers and has been absent since.