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Bulls eye up du Toit

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Bulls eyeing up Springbok star Pieter-Steph du Toit - reports

The 2019 Super Rugby season proved to be a mix bag for the Bulls, as they qualified for the playoffs for the first time in six years, although fell considerably short of the South African conference champions, the Jaguares.

A loss to the Hurricanes in the quarter-finals ended their season, before encountering their fair share of struggles in the Currie Cup. After four rounds, the Bulls have just one win to show and currently sit bottom of the table.

After green shoots and signs of optimism earlier in the year, Head Coach Pote Human and Director of Rugby Alan Zondagh will know they still have their work cut out turning around the Pretoria-based franchise and that there are leaps to be made at both the Super Rugby and Currie Cup levels.

One possible improvement could come in the form of Stormers and Springbok flanker Pieter-Steph du Toit, who Afrikaans paper Rapport are reporting is being eyed up by the Bulls.

The 26-year-old has become one of the lynchpins of the South African pack and his form for the Stormers since making the move to Western Cape in 2016 has been consistently at a high level.

A Western Cape native, du Toit made the move to Durban early in his career, where he made his breakthrough with the Sharks. He spent three years with the Sharks as a senior player, before making the move back home to the Stormers.

Now considered one of the best back rowers in world rugby, du Toit would certainly add to the Bulls team, with the likes of Hanro Liebenberg, Lood de Jager and Jannes Kirsten departing the franchise. Duane Vermeulen, RG Snyman and Jason Jenkins are also set for stints in Japan after the Rugby World Cup.

The Bulls have been public about their desire to downsize their squad, including the number of contracts they hand out to young players, and du Toit would certainly be a welcome addition to a smaller, more elite squad at Loftus Versveld.

A dismal season for the Stormers that saw them finish bottom of the South African conference in Super Rugby could spur du Toit into action, although the Bulls will need to make an enticing offer to lure him away from his local club and friends and family in the area.

Watch: JRFU vice-president proposes new domestic league in Japan

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Bulls eyeing up Springbok star Pieter-Steph du Toit - reports