The Highlanders are travelling to Pretoria this weekend as massive favourites, but have you considered the ref in Bulls v Highlanders matches?

When we looked at the stats prior to this weekend’s games one stood out more than most. In fact, it jumped off the page!

The Highlanders have never beaten the Bulls when there has been a South African referee at the helm.

This weekend’s referee Jaco van Heerden hails from the Republic.

It should also be noted that each time this has occurred the match has been at the Bulls spiritual home of Loftus Versfeld.

Is this combination of factual events a concern for the Highlanders? Is it a concern for the discerning punter?

5 March 2004, Rugby Union, Rebel Sport Super 12, Loftus Pretoria. Highlanders vs Bulls.
Highlanders Centre Tony Brown tries to fend off Wessel Roux.
Bulls drew with the Highlanders 16-16.
Please credit:Africa Visuals / Photosport

Quick stats

  • There have been 19 matches between the two teams. The Highlanders have won 12, drawn 1, lost 6.
  • Of the 6 losses, 5 have been at Loftus Versfeld. The draw was also there.
  • All but 1 match in Pretoria has been played at Loftus. That match was played at Johann Van Riebeeck Stadium and the Highlanders won 42-40 in 2000.
  • The average score at Loftus is 34-29 to the Bulls.
  • 59 is the most points scored by the Bulls in this match at Loftus, way back in 1996 (59-29 victory).
  • 54 is the most points scored by the Highlanders in this match at Loftus. This was a 54-17 victory in 2001.
  • The Highlanders have not won at Loftus since 2011.

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Author: @Kiwistatsman

Total sports junkie who loves nothing more than analysing the statistical side of games to find patterns. Thrives on fantasy competitions and quizzes.


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