16 Mar 2009

Bulls sit atop Super 14 rugby ladder despite a bye

1:07 pm on 16 March 2009

The South African side the Bulls didn't need to play to remain top of the Super 14 rugby standings after a series of upsets stalled the leading contenders.

The Bulls, who play the Hurricanes on Friday, are now the only unbeaten team in the competition after their South African counterparts the Sharks, along with the New South Wales Waratahs, both suffered surprise defeats.

The Waratahs loss on Friday night to the ACT Brumbies hinted at a weekend of upsets was in store as they suffered their first loss of the season going down 21-11 in Canberra.

The the Crusaders, blew a 20-6 lead to splutter to a 23-all draw with the Western Force, with the defending champs now a lowly eleventh.

The Queensland Reds abandoned their traditionally cautious style to topple the Sharks in Brisbane.

The Blues are the only New Zealand side in the top four, trouncing the winless South African side the Cheetahs 46-12 while the Chiefs, who host the Blues on Saturday night held out the Highlanders 14-11.

The Stormers prepared for a five-week road trip to New Zealand and Australia with beating the Lions 56-18 in Cape Town.