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Big wins on Wednesday took centre stage in the main games of the Under-18 Coca-Cola Craven Week and Coca-Cola Academy Week at Kearsney College in Durban to spice up the competition as the final day’s play draws nearer.

In the last two matches in the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, DHL Western Province outplayed hosts, the Sharks, 60-5, and the Pumas overpowered Namibia 51-15. In the Coca-Cola Academy Week, the Sharks defeated Border 40-25.

In stark contrast, DHL Western Province had to work hard for their 31-29 victory against the Bidvest Golden Lions in the Coca-Cola Academy Week to emerge as one of the main contenders to battle it out in the final match of the tournament on Saturday.

The victories for all four teams ensured that they will enter the final day’s play on Saturday unbeaten.

Wednesday’s play was riveting, with a total of 702 points scored across the two tournaments – 350 of which were scored in the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week from 50 tries and 352 in the Coca-Academy Week from 52 tries.

In the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, Western Province, who won the final match of the 2015 tournament with a stunning 95-0 victory, showed that they could be equally threatening this season as they as they cruised to a 43-0 half-time score against the Sharks.

Such was the high quality of their attack they ran circles around the Sharks to cross the chalk seven times, while their effective defence denied the hosts from getting close to the tryline. The Cape side continued to force their way through the defence in the second half to add two more tries to their tally. Continue reading

SA Rugby on Wednesday welcomed Nashua to its family of partners with the business solutions provider agreeing to an exciting three year sponsorship of the iconic Currie Cup.

The revamped Currie Cup competition consisting of nine teams in the Premier Division and six in the First Division, kicks off early next month following on from the qualifying competition, which started in April and still has two rounds remaining.

“This partnership doesn’t only mark a new era in Nashua’s long-standing history of support for South African sport, but is massively exciting for us as it’s the first time that they have gotten involved at this level in rugby,” said Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby.

“In a way, Nashua’s involvement in the Currie Cup completes a cycle that started in 1990, when they became the first sponsor to prominently display their branding on a local rugby jersey – that of the Blue Bulls, who were then still called Northern Transvaal. Continue reading

The Under-18 Coca-Cola Craven Week and Coca-Cola Academy Week continued to keep fans gripped on day two of the SA Rugby Youth Week events at Kearsney College in Durban as a handful of teams stamped their authority in an entertaining day’s action.

The Enrista Blue Bulls, Bidvest Golden Lions and Konica Minolta Free State registered impressive victories to open up their campaign in the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, while the Blue Bulls, Leopards, Pumas CD, Sharks CD and Namibia secured big wins in the Coca-Cola Academy Week.

Boland, meanwhile, overcame a determined Konica Minolta Free State team 20-14 in a tight closing match in the Coca-Cola Academy Week.

In a thrilling second day 333 points were scored in the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week with 50 tries scored, while 390 points and 56 tries were scored in the Coca-Cola Academy Week.

In the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, the Blue Bulls defeated Border 48-15, while the Golden Lions overpowered SWD 59-26 and the Free State beat the Valke 68-26.

The Blue Bulls got their clash against Border off to a flying start as they ran hard on attack, which earned them three tries in the first 27 minutes. They supported this with a solid defensive effort, and limited Border to scoring only a penalty in the first half, for a 19-3 lead. Border, however, showed their fighting spirit as they scored two tries in two minutes almost immediately after the break to force their way back into the match. Both teams showed intent on attack as the match progressed, but while the Pretoria side converted their chances to score four more tries, unforced handling errors denied Border from adding to their score. This forced them to settle for a 48-15 defeat. Continue reading

The Under-18 Coca-Cola Craven Week and Coca-Cola Academy Week teams are raring to go in the grand finale of the SA Rugby Youth Weeks series starting on Monday at Kearsney College in Durban following two weeks of high-octane school rugby.

GWK Griquas Rural will take on Old Mutual Zimbabwe in the opening match of the flagship event of SA Rugby Youth Weeks, the U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, at 09h05 on Monday, while the Blue Valke and SA LSEN teams will kick off the Coca-Cola Academy Week a little earlier at 08h00.

The tournaments will mark the end of the SA Rugby Youth Weeks series, which has seen the LSEN Week being hosted in Pretoria, the U13 Coca-Cola Craven Week and U16 Coca-Cola Grant Khomo Weeks in Paarl, the National Girls U16 Week in Welkom and the National Girls U18 Week in Kimberley in the last two weeks. Continue reading

The SA Rugby Women’s Interprovincial Competition got off to a solid start on Saturday, with defending champions Border, Eastern Province and KwaZulu-Natal kicking off the A Section on a winning note.

In the B Section, the Golden Lions and Pumas scored 50 points a piece to register morale boosting victories.

Border, who secured a hat-trick of titles in the competition last season, picked up where they left off in 2015 as they cruised to a 74-3 victory against SWD at the Bridgton Sports Grounds in Oudtshoorn, while Eastern Province registered a valuable 32-17 home win against Western Province at the Zwide Stadium in Port Elizabeth.

In the other A Section encounter, KwaZulu-Natal overcame a tough challenge from 2015 finalists, the Blue Bulls, to register a narrow 14-10 victory. Continue reading

The Momentum Cape Times Knysna Forest Marathon 2016 was held in perfect conditions on Saturday 9 July 2016.

Motlatsi Sesing won the Marathon in an impressive time of 2:38.35. The 36  year old athlete from Mohlakeng came in just ahead of local Knysna athlete, Sinesipho Didishe (2:40.44) and Zolile Mhlalo (2:45.45) from Port Elizabeth.

The ladies race was won by Thalia Charalambous in a time of 3:14.12, with Davera Mogson placing 2nd (3:18.34), and local Knysna athlete Lisl Grobler 3rd (3:24.16).

Said Thalia “I was very happy with my performance today, I took off around 10 minutes from my time last year. It was an ideal day for running, but there was still a lot of mud and little potholes and technical trail that came into it so you had to watch your step. The weather conditions were awesome and I had an amazing day out. Next up is the Greece marathon in November so I am training really hard for that.” Continue reading

DHL Stormers centre Daniel du Plessis has been ruled out of the clash with the Southern Kings at DHL Newlands due to concussion.

Du Plessis was the only casualty from the 22-3 bonus-point win against the Western Force in Perth.

Props Frans Malherbe (neck injury), JC Janse van Rensburg (knee injury) and Oli Kebble (knee injury) will all return to training this week, with a call on their availability to face the Southern Kings to be made later in the week.

Loose forward Nizaam Carr will also be assessed during the week, after having injured his shoulder in the win against the Rebels in Melbourne.

WP, Sharks continue winning ways in U13 Coca-Cola Craven Week

Note to Editors: The U13 Coca-Cola Craven Week fixtures for the final day on Friday have been included below Thursday’s results.

Under-13 Coca-Cola Craven Week hosts, DHL Western Province, and the Sharks on Thursday continued their winning ways at Paarl Gymnasium to remain the only unbeaten teams in the competition before the final day’s play on Friday.

DHL Western Province, who won the final match of the tournament last season, edged the Itec Blue Bulls 11-10, while the Sharks pipped the TW Profile Services Valke 15-14 in epic encounters. Continue reading

Under-13 Coca-Cola Craven Week hosts, DHL Western Province, and the Sharks on Thursday continued their winning ways at Paarl Gymnasium to remain the only unbeaten teams in the competition before the final day’s play on Friday.

DHL Western Province, who won the final match of the tournament last season, edged the Itec Blue Bulls 11-10, while the Sharks pipped the TW Profile Services Valke 15-14 in epic encounters.

DHL Western Province drew first blood in their clash against the Itec Blue Bulls as they used their pace out wide to touch down for their first try in the first minute. But the Pretoria side tightened up their defence and used the raw pace by some of their backs to counter a few more efforts by the hosts to find space out wide. With the teams closely matched on attack and defence, Western Province opted for a penalty to inflate their score, and the Bulls took the same option minutes later to trail 8-3. The visitors tried hard to sneak in for a try before the break, but they battled to break through the defensive wall, and conceded a turnover. Continue reading

The penultimate round of Vodacom Super Rugby matches will be played this weekend, and the action kick off on Friday evening in Johannesburg where competition leaders the Emirates Lions host the Southern Kings. The match at Emirates Airline Park starts at 19h00.

Springbok flanker Jaco Kriel will again lead the Emirates Lions in the absence of regular skipper Warren Whiteley, who will miss the rest of the competition because of a shoulder injury.

The Highveld side have already qualified for the playoffs and will be looking to maintain their momentum against the Eastern Cape side. Kriel and his team mates have won their last four matches with a bonus point and are currently top of the overall standings. A bonus-point win will not only secure them home advantage for the rest of the knockout stages, but will also see them equal their franchise winning record of five victories in a row.

The rest of the South African teams are all playing on Saturday. In Perth, the DHL Stormers will be aiming for a second away win in a row on Australian soil when they face the Western Force at the NIB Stadium in a 13h55 kick-off. The Cape side recorded a record win last week over the Rebels in Melbourne, and another win will see them consolidate their top spot in the second African conference. Utility forward Rynhardt Elstadt will earn his 50th DHL Stormers cap if he comes off the bench. Continue reading

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