Preview: Currie Cup prelim, Round 1

Thu, 05 Jun 2014 14:45
Large currie cup trophy.2jpg

The battle for the remaining position in the Currie Cup will begin on Friday as six of the seven teams involved take to the field

The battle for the remaining position in the Currie Cup will begin on Friday as six of the seven teams involved take to the field in the opening round of the official qualifiers.
 
The qualifying rounds will run until July 19, with the team earning the most log points after their three home and away matches, earning the right to compete in the Currie Cup.
 
The participating teams are Griquas, the Leopards, Border Bulldogs, SWD Eagles, the Valke, Griffons and the Boland Cavaliers.
 
Vodacom Cup champions and 2013 Currie Cup participants, Griquas, will meet the Border Bulldogs in the opening match in Kimberley on Friday.
 
While the Leopards take on the SWD Eagles at Profert Olën Park in Potchefstroom and the Griffons meet the Boland Cavaliers at the North West Stadium in Welkom on Saturday.
 
The Valke, meanwhile, have a bye.
 
In Kimberley Griquas will enter their clash against the Border Bulldogs as overwhelming favourites with home ground advantage and confidence counting in their favour after being crowned the Vodacom Cup champions last month.
 
They also boast a team featuring several quality players, meaning Border will have to match them up-front and defend like demons. 
 
The East London side’s defence, in particular, let them down in the Vodacom Cup competition earlier this year as they conceded on average six tries a match. 
 
Their forwards will also have their work cut out as they have to produce a solid performance to counter the strong home pack, while good discipline will be vital as Griquas fullback Gouws Prinsloo poses a threat with the boot.
 
The clash between the Leopards and SWD Eagles in Potchefstroom, meanwhile, is expected to be tight as both teams boast several playmakers.
 
While the Leopards will rely heavily on the vast experience of veteran Springbok flyhalf Andrè Pretorius and the impressive skills of wing Luther Obi and centres Adriaan Engelbrecht and George Tossel.
 
The SWD Eagles will look to wing Alshaun Bock, flyhalf Karlo Aspeling and No.8 Davon Raubenheimer to work them onto the front foot.
 
In Welkom the clash between the  Griffons and Boland Cavaliers could also prove to be a close encounter. The forward battle, in particular, is expected to be decisive.
 
The Cavaliers will be especially wary of  Griffons No.8 Nicky Steyn and centre Japie Nel, who have a knack at crossing the tryline.
 
The hosts, meanwhile, need to be disciplined throughout the match as Boland fullback Eric Zana has the potential to keep the scoreboard ticking should the penalty count favour his team.
 
Currie Cup  Round One qualifiers:
 
Friday, June 6
 
Griquas vs Border Bulldogs
Venue:  Park, Kimberley
Kick-off: 15.00
 
Saturday, June 7
 
Leopards vs SWD Eagles
Venue: Profert Olën Park, Potchefstroom
Kick-off: 15.00
 
Griffons vs Boland Cavaliers
Venue: North West Stadium, Welkom
Kick-off: 15.00
There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 26 June 2016
Canada v Italy 16h00 Toronto
Fri, 01 July 2016
Chiefs v Crusaders 07h35 Hamilton
Brumbies v Reds 09h40 Canberra
EP Kings v Griquas 16h00 Port Elizabeth
Blue Bulls v Boland 17h00 Loftus Versfeld
Sat, 02 July 2016
Jaguares v Blues 22h00 Buenos Aires
Sunwolves v Waratahs 05h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Blues 07h35 Wellington
Rebels v Stormers 09h40 Melbourne
Free State Cheetahs v Falcons 10h05 Bloemfontein
Golden Lions v Griffons 12h05 Johannesburg
Cheetahs v Force 13h00 Bloemfontein
Western Province v Eagles 13h00 Newlands
Namibia v Border 13h00 Windhoek
Sharks v Leopards 15h00 Durban
Kings v Highlanders 15h05 Port Elizabeth
Lions v Sharks 17h10 Johannesburg
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Griquas 11 9 0 2 46
Western Province 10 9 0 1 42
Pumas 11 8 0 3 41
Boland 10 8 0 2 40
Golden Lions 10 5 1 4 31
Griffons 10 6 0 4 30
Free State Cheetahs 10 5 0 5 30
Blue Bulls 11 5 0 6 27
Eagles 10 5 0 5 26
Leopards 10 4 0 6 24
Border 10 4 0 6 20
Falcons 10 3 0 9 19
Sharks 10 3 0 7 18
EP Kings 10 2 1 7 12
Namibia 10 0 0 10 1