The Bulls have kept their Super Rugby play-off hopes alive by earning a further two points on their Australasian tour.
They held the Blues to a 22-all draw at Eden Park in New Zealand, after trailing 10-8 at half-time. Both teams managed to score three tries in very difficult, wet conditions.
After trading penalties, the Bulls applied the pressure and were rewarded for a patient build-up by the forwards.
Loose-forward Hanro Liebenberg scored the opening try of the match, after a clever inside pass by lock RG Snyman.
But the Bulls were caught off guard when the home side took a quick tap from a penalty.
Prop Ofa Tu’unga scored from close range and the Blues went into the break, leading 10-8.
The Blues came out guns blazing at second half and forced their way into the Bulls half from a line-out move.
After another patient build-up, lock Scott Scrafton eventually barged over to stretch their lead to 15-eight.
Conditions improved which provided the two teams the opportunity to be a little more enterprising. The Bulls won a turn-over and when they eventually took it wide, wing Cornal Hendrick did the rest.
The ding-dong battle continued. Following a sold scrum close to the Bulls’ tryline, eighthman Akira Ioane picked up and scored the easiest of tries.
The Bulls snatched the draw five minutes from time thank to a sniping run from flyhalf Manie Libbok. He converted his own for a well deserved 22-all draw.
In Friday’s morning’s other match, the Rebels squandered an opportunity to go clear at the top of the Australian conference, after a fifth defeat to the Waratahs in Melbourne.
They visitors who led 13-three at half-time, outscored their hosts by three tries to two for a 20-15 victory.
Blues v Bulls | Super Rugby 2019 Rd 16 Highlights
The @BluesRugbyTeam played host to the @BlueBullsRugby in Auckland and it went right to the wire, Manie Libbok’s late try and conversion securing a 22-22 draw.#SuperRugby #BLUvBUL pic.twitter.com/pgrP05iHHu
— Super Rugby (@SuperRugby) May 31, 2019