South African back rower Marcell Coetzee looks set to leave Ulster and join the Bulls after a not so cryptic twitter post from the Pretoria-based club.
Coetzee joined Ulster from the Sharks in 2016 and has been one of the northern province’s best players when he is not struggling with injury problems.
However, it looks like Ulster fans will be saying farewell to the bruising Springbok flanker soon, after the Bulls strongly hinted that Coetzee would be making his way to Pretoria at the end of the season.
#BullsFamily24 we have the biggest festive gift for you …EVER! So big .. So cool… We still trying to package it 😂 Check out our social platforms on Monday at 10h00 💪 Our BIGGEST signing for the year… literally 😏 pic.twitter.com/ZySFjWoVGt
— Official Blue Bulls (@BlueBullsRugby) December 25, 2020
The picture, which hides Coetzee’s face, is taken from a Rugby Championship match in 2015 between South Africa and Argentina.
It didn’t take long for fans to figure out that the player in question was the Ulster flanker, who is set to be confirmed as a Bull on Monday.
While Coetzee will no longer be playing for Ulster, fans may still see the South African giant at the Kingspan Stadium on a regular basis, as the Bulls, the Stormers, the Sharks and the Lions are set to join an expanded Pro14 (Pro16?).
— PRO14 RUGBY (@PRO14Official) December 23, 2020
A move back to South Africa will presumably help to revive Coetzee’s Springbok career, with the British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa set to take place next summer.
The 29-year old was unlucky not to feature for the Springboks at the World Cup in Japan after suffering an ankle injury during a Rugby World Cup warm up match against Argentina.