Province move to the top
CURRIE CUP WRAP: Western Province recorded a resounding 52-26 bonus-point victory against Border Bulldogs at Newlands Stadium in Cape Town on Saturday.
The win moves Province to the top of the Currie Cup qualifying log, above Griquas on points difference, while the Bulldogs languish fourth from bottom.
In the day's other games, there were wins for the Boland and the Golden Lions.
Western Province 52-26 Border Bulldogs
Border led 26-23 midway through the second stanza, but lock Lindokuhle Welemu was shown a yellow card after both teams had been warned by the referee for repeated infringements.
The home side were able to run in three tries without reply to open up a 19-point advantage before Welemu returned to the field of play.
Western Province captain Tim Whitehead opened the scoring with a well-worked try with just three minutes on the clock as the inside centre stepped inside to beat two defenders over the line. With Province losing their captain early in the second period through concussion, Border regained the lead with their second try.
The lead changed hands yet again as Edwill van der Merwe dashed down the left hand touchline, scything through three defenders to score Province's bonus-point try.
Province mauled the resultant penalty close to the line and replacement scrumhalf Justin Phillips, dived over the line for the home side's eighth try.
Tries: Van der Merwe 2, Whitehead, Solomon, Masimla, Collopy, Hermanus, Phillips
Cons: Hermanus 5, Cox
Tries: Dumezweni, Mqalo
Cons: Banda 2
Pens: Banda 4
Western Province: 15 Grant Hermanus, 14 Khanyo Ngcukana, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Tim Whitehead (captain), 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Godlen Masimla, 8 Jacques Vermeulen, 7 Luke Stringer, 6 Eital Bredenkamp, 5 David Ribbans, 4 Eduard Zandberg, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Chad Solomon, 1 Kyle Whyte.
Replacements: 16 Cullen Collopy, 17 Denzil Riddles, 18 Jurie van Vuuren, 19 Beyers de Villiers, 20 Rikus Bothma, 21 Justin Phillips, 22 Dennis Cox.
Border: 15 Sonwabiso Mqalo, 14 Sipho Nofemele, 13 Makazole Mapimpi, 12 Lunga Dumezweni, 11 Michael Makase, 10 Masixole Banda, 9 Sinovuyo Nyoka, 8 Athenkosi Manentsa, 7 Siya Mdaka (captain), 6 Onke Dubase, 5 Wandile Putuma, 4 Lindokuhle Welemu, 3 Johannes Jonker, 2 Ludwe Booi, 1 Blake Kyd.
Replacements: 16 Mpafi, 17 Siyamthanda Ngande, 18 Nkosi Nofuma, 19 Lukhanyo Nomzanga, 20 Bangi Kobese, 21 Sethu Tom, 22 Saneliso Ngoma.
Referee: Pierre Brousset (France)
Golden Lions 35-29 SWD
The Golden Lions continued their winning ways as they overcame the SWD Eagles 35-29 in at Ellis Park.
This season has been a landmark for the Johannesburg side as they have played several of their home matches at club grounds around the region.
The visitors matched their more illustrious opponents in terms of tries scored (four), but were constantly kept at arm's length thanks to a brilliant kicking display by Lions' flyhalf Siya Masuku. The number 10 contributed 15 points from the boot.
The Lions were without several of their key players, including their talismanic captain Ruaan Lerm, as Johan Ackermann is resting many of his Super Rugby regulars for this weekend's trip to Argentina. As a result, some new faces were eager to impress and duly delivered.
Once again a number 8 scored for the Lions, this time through Jo-Hanco de Villiers. With Warren Whitely earmarked for greatness, and the usual skipper, Ruaan Lerm selected to take on the Jaguares in the final Super Rugby league match of the season, the coaching staff in Johannesburg can feel confident that the back of the scrum is in good hands.
On a typical Highveld winter's day, with a cool breeze and a cloudless sky, free flowing, running rugby was the order of the day. In total eight tries were scored which will please not only fans of the South African game, but also administrators and coaches who might be concerned with the imminent exodus of playing talent. Clearly, strength in depth is not an issue in the Republic.
The result means that the Eagles will compete in the second division when the Currie Cup kicks off later this year, but they can be proud of their performance here today.
As for the Lions, they once again proved they have quality in depth and have all the ingredients for a dynasty in the making.
Tries: Ramaboea, De Villiers, Bell, Jansen van Vuren
Cons: Masuku 3
Pens: Masuku 3
Tries: Parks, Haupt, Nomdo, Kruger
Cons: Graaff 3
Golden Lions: 15 JW Bell, 14 Godfrey Ramaboea, 13 Cameron Rooi, 12 Jarryd Sage, 11 Selom Gavor, 10 Siya Masusku, 9 Marco Jansen van Vuren, 8 Jo-Hanko de Villiers, 7 Victor Sekekete, 6 James Venter, 5 MB Lusaseni, 4 JP du Preez, 3 Justin Ackermann, 2 Pieter Jansen, 1 Arnout Malherbe.
Replacements: 16 Le Roux Baard, 17 Henco Smit, 18 Kyle Kruger, 19 Adriaan Bester, 20 Wiehan Jacobs, 21 Curtis Jonas, 22 Barend Smit.
SWD Eagles: 15 Jacquin Jansen, 14 Carlo Radebe, 13 Daniel Roberts, 12 Kirsten Heyns, 11 Lenes Nomdo, 10 Hansie Graaff, 9 Johan Steyn, 8 Lyndon Hartnick, 7 Christo Du Plessis, 6 Janneman Stander, 5 Lodewyk Uys, 4 Peet van der Walt, 3 Nemo Roelofse, 2 Kurt Haupt (captain), 1 Juandre Digue.
Replacements: 16 Mark Pretorius, 17 Dean Hopp, 18 Marco Kruger, 19 Buran Parks, 20 Dillin Snel, 21 Thomas Kean, 22 Riaan Arends.
Referee: Cwengile Jadezweni
Free State 17-24 Boland
Despite playing at altitude the visiting Boland Cavaliers beat hosts Free State XV 24-17 in Bloemfontein.
The first half was a dour affair and the only scoring action saw Cavaliers fullback Nico Scheepers kick a penalty before the hosts struck back courtesy of a try by outside centre Carel-Jan Coetzee and a Sias Ebersohn conversion. The score line of 7-3 at the break spoke volumes of the quality the handful of fans had to witness at the Stadium.
An Ebersohn penalty and conversion, interspersed with a try by replacement back Lorenzo Gordon, saw the hosts lead 17-3 in the city of roses. Ebersohn missed a penalty shortly hereafter and the error proved to be vital in the context of the outcome.
The men from Wellington then gave themselves a glimmer of hope when outside centre Christopher Bosch went over the whitewash. The try was started when Shaun Adendorff had a strong run and the bearded flanker was at the forefront of the Cavaliers revival. No.8 Zandre Jordaan then broke through the Free State defence and his pass found the experienced winger Danwell Demas who ran to even it up at 17-17, courtesy of another conversion by Scheepers.
The result was sealed when Bosch doubled his tally a few minutes later and more faultless goal kicking from Scheepers saw the Cavaliers finish the game with the score 24-17 in their favour.
Next week the Boland wrap up their campaign by welcoming the Golden Lions XV to Wellington while the Free State will want to finish strong when they face Border in East London.
Tries: Coetzee, Gordon
Cons: Ebersohn 2
Tries: Bosch 2, Demas
Cons: Scheepers 3
Free State: 15 Reinhardt Erwee, 14 Jean-Pierre Coetzee, 13 Carel-Jan Coetzee, 12 Tertius Kruger, 11 Maphutha Dolo, 10 Sias Ebersohn (captain), 9 Mthokozisi Mkhabela, 8 Nardus Erasmus, 7 Ntokozo Vidima, 6 Refuoe Rampeta, 5 Neil Claassen, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Erich de Jager, 2 Jacques du Toit, 1 Gert Kotze.
Replacements: 16 Elandre Huggett, 17 Gunther Janse van Vuuren, 18 Brendan Verster, 19 Gopolang Molefe, 20 Ruan van Rensburg, 21 Darren Baron, 22 Lorenzo Gordon.
Boland Cavaliers: 15 Nico Scheepers, 14 Sergio Torrens, 13 Ryan Nell (captain), 12 Christopher Bosch, 11 Danwel Demas, 10 William van Wyk, 9 Jovelian de Koker, 8 Zandre Jordaan, 7 Wayne Wilschut, 6 Shaun Adendorff, 5 Ferdie Horn, 4 Hanno Kitshoff, 3 Basil Short, 2 Chadley Wenn, 1 Niel Oelofse.
Replacements: 16 JC Genade, 17 Francois Hanekom, 18 Shaun McDonald, 19 Kenan Cronje, 20 Gerrit van Wyk, 21 Adriaan Carelse, 22 Marnus Hugo.
Referee: AJ Jacobs