Springbok hooker Adriaan Strauss will captain the Bulls in Vodacom Super Rugby next year, while flyhalf Handré Pollard will serve as his vice-captain.
Strauss is no stranger to leadership, having captained the Cheetahs for a number of seasons, and Bulls coach Nollis Marais said he was the perfect fit for his team.
'Adriaan ticks all the boxes. He has vast experience at Super Rugby level, has played 54 Tests for the Springboks, where he is part of the leadership group, and represents what we stand for as Bulls. His leadership style is great, as is his ability to rally players around him. He is also one of the top hookers in world rugby and even opponents will look up to his presence on the field.
'It is also very important for a coach to have a good working relationship with his captain, and Adriaan and myself share a number of values, with the most important being our shared vision to build a special team and leave a legacy.'
Marais said Pollard was also a natural leader.
'He is young in age, but already very experienced on the rugby field. He is also part of the new generation that is coming through at Loftus and it's around him that we will be building the next generation of stars. Both Adriaan and Handré have the potential to captain the Springboks, so we can be very proud and humble about the fact that their leadership will be available to the Bulls.'
Strauss, who takes over the reins from last year's Super Rugby skipper, Pierre Spies, said he was humbled by the appointment.
'There were some brilliant captains in the past and I was lucky to be part of a special generation of Bulls players who won this competition in my early years. I have learned vaulable lessons about the team culture and when I returned last year, I was very happy to see the work ethic and drive to be the best did not change. There are exciting times ahead for this group and I am very keen to be part of it. We want to be a team that makes a difference to our fans.'
Photo: Anne Laing/HSM Images