PRETORIA - The Bulls beat the Stormers 25-17 in the Super Rugby match at Pretoria on Friday with Morne Steyn kicking the home team to an opening day win in the South African conference.
Steyn landed all seven of his kicks and Chiliboy Ralepelle went over for a 68th-minute try for the Bulls, the three-time champions.
Flyhalf Elton Jantjies had a bad start to his time with the Stormers and missed his first four kicks before Joe Pietersen took over.
Captain Jean de Villiers scored a 50th-minute try for the visiting Stormers and Pietersen closed it to 12-10 after the Bulls' first-half dominance.
But Steyn's accuracy was decisive and Ralepelle snapped up a loose ball close to the tryline to seal it before Andries Bekker's late try for the Stormers.
"It was important to get a good start, be clinical," Bulls captain Pierre Spies said.
"It's a tough competition ... that's why it's important to get a good start.
"De Villiers said his Stormers had been "beaten by a better team on the day. Definitely a big wake-up call for us."
On Jantjies' poor debut, the Springbok captain said: "He had an off-day with the boot. That happens."
Television official Johan Greeff was massively influential as it was his rubber stamp on Ralepelle's 68th minute try that killed off any hope the trailing Stormers had of getting back into the game.
The Stormers head back home with only themselves to blame as their own errors cost them victory despite outscoring their hosts two tries to one.