It was a good weekend to the four hosts in the Currie Cup Premier Division, with Boland Kavaliers, Vodacom Blue Bulls, Toyota Free State Cheetahs and DHL Western Province all emerging victorious in a thrilling round of rugby action.
The 34-27 win of the DHL WP over the Cell C Sharks at DHL Newlands in Cape Townon Saturday also ended the East Coast side’s unbeaten run, with only the Toyota Free State now unbeaten in the competition, brought to you by Nashua and DirectAxis.
Despite the defeat, the Sharks are still top of the log, but Free State, one point in arrears, has a game in hand.
In the Currie Cup First Division, Border continued their good form with a solid win over the Down Touch Griffons in East London, while the other front-runner in the competition, the Leopards, was the only side victorious away from home, beating the Hino Valke in Kempton Park.Currie Cup Premier Division
A late call-up into the starting DHL Western Province team, EW Viljoen, scored a brace to help his team to a solid win over the Cell C Sharks, who dropped their first result in the competition. Viljoen was called into the DHL Newlands clash after Huw Jones was ruled before the start and scored two of the five tries by the home side. Springbok Sevens flyer, Werner Kok, playing on the wing, scored his first in the competition. The visitors had the lead at the break, but could not offer enough on defence in the second half.
Earlier in the day, the Toyota Free State Cheetahs kept their unbeaten run intact in a high scoring match against the Eastern Province Kings in Bloemfontein. The PE side does have some defensive issues and conceded 33 tries already, but they do score some spectacular ones themselves. In all, 12 tries were scored in a very entertaining match.
The Vodacom Blue Bulls kept their clean sheet at Loftus Versfeld Friday evening, beating Gauteng rivals Xerox Golden Lions 31-17 in a match full of passion and drama. The home side had a good first half and although the visitors threatened in the second half after a great try by Kwagga Smith, secured the win with a late try.
The Boland Kavaliers outlasted the Steval Pumas in Wellington on Friday in a thrilling clash which saw the first red card of the competition. The Steval Pumas centre Tyler Fisher was shown a red card for a dangerous elbow charge after 27 minutes and after that, the visitors were up against it. They trailed 13-5 at the break and despite two late tries, could not catch up to Boland, who scored their second win of the competition.
Currie Cup First Division
The Leopards and Border continued with their good start in the First Division. Border won their third on the trot with a solid win over the Down Touch Griffons in East London, with Masixole Banda scoring 15 of their 41 points.
In Kempton Park, the Leopards backline proved to be just too slick for the Hino Valke, scoring five of the six tries by the visitors. Namibian international midfielder Johan Deysel was a handful, not only scoring a try himself, but converting five tries as well for a personal haul of 15 points.
Currie Cup Premier Division Scorers (click on the hyperlinks below for the full run of play):
DHL Western Province – Tries: EW Viljoen (2), Johnny Kotze, Kobus van Dyk, Werner Kok. Conversions: Robert du Preez (3). Penalty: Robert du Preez.
Cell C Sharks – Tries: Jean-Luc du Preez, Rhyno Smith. Conversion: Curwin Bosch. Penalties: Curwin Bosch (5).
Toyota Free State Cheetahs – Tries: Charles Marais (2), Nicolas Lee (2), Neil Marais, Ox Nche, Paul Schoeman (2), Tom Botha.
EP Kings – Tries: Berton Klaasen, JC Greyling, Vince Jobo. Conversions: Pieter-Steyn de Wet, Kobus Marais. Penalty: Pieter-Steyn de Wet. Drop Goal: Pieter-Steyn de Wet.
Vodacom Blue Bulls – Tries: Joshua Stander, Marvin Orie, Travis Ismaiel. Conversions: Tian Schoeman (2). Penalties: Tian Schoeman (4).
Xerox Golden Lions – Tries: Howard Mnisi, Kwagga Smith. Conversions: Marnitz Boshoff (2). Penalty: Marnitz Boshoff.
Boland Kavaliers – Tries: Adriaan Carelse, Robbie Louw, Shaun Adendorff. Conversions: Theuns Kotze (2). Penalty: Kotze. Drop Goal: Kotze.
Steval Pumas – Tries: Kevin Luiters, Frankie Herne, Leighton-Ray van Wyk, Renaldo Bothma. Conversion: Francois Brummer.
Currie Cup First Division Scorers:
Hino Valke – Tries: Johan Pretorius, Xander Cronje, Andries Schutte. Conversions: Karlo Aspeling (2).
Leopards – Tries: Adrian Vermeulen, Bradley Moolman, Gene Willemse (2), Henro-Pierre Swart, Johan Deysel. Conversions: Johan Deysel (5), Johnny Welthagen.
Border – Tries: Masixole Banda, Oliver Sono (2), Michael Makase, Onke Dubase, Sipho Nofemele. Conversions: Masixole Banda (4). Penalty: Masixole Banda.
Down Touch Griffons – Tries: Gavin Annandale, Japie Nel. Conversion: George Whitehead. Penalties: George Whitehead (4).
Currie Cup Premier Division log table:
Currie Cup First Division log table: