Bulls wins Sevens crown
INTERPROVINCIAL SEVENS WRAP: Their senior 15-a-side team may have stumbled at the final hurdle, but the Blue Bulls won South Africa's interprovincial Sevens title at the weekend.
The Blue Bulls won their second Sevens title win in Nelspruit at the weekend, after they also took honours in 2015.
Their 40-10 win over the Golden Lions in the Final was full of merit.
In the Final the Golden Lions were on the scoresheet first. They won a line-out close to the Blue Bulls line, changed direction and Mark Alberts crashed over.
They scored a second unconverted try soon after, before a burst by WJ Strydom saw the Blue Bulls close the gap to three points.
Another try shortly thereafter put the Blue Bulls in the lead for the first time.
Another burst by Strydom on the buzzer saw them jump into a 21-10 lead at the break.
Strydom, who finished the tournament as top scorer with 85 points, was also named Player of the Tournament.
The Blue Bulls started the second half well, scoring a quick try, which gave the Blue Bulls a lot of confidence. After that they ran riot and secured the win long before the final hooter.
The Blue Bulls beat hosts, the Pumas (Lowveld) in the one semifinal and the Golden Lions edged the Griffons in the other.
The Griffons had a fast start against the Golden Lions in their semifinal, with Selvyn Davids proving a handful with his elusive running. The Golden Lions proved to be the more physical side and dominated the tackle situation. The Griffons had the upper hand at the break, but the Gauteng side took the lead after two minutes in the second half and never looked back, winning 31-21 to advance to the final.
The Blue Bulls had to overcome a strong start by the Pumas (Lowveld) to secure a place in the final. They held a 21-0 lead at the break and had most of the field position and possession.
The home side came back into the game with two tries, but the Blue Bulls sealed the result with a fourth try, winning 26-12.
Earlier in the day, the Golden Lions outplayed the Leopards 28-0 in the quarterfinals. The Northwest team did not show any of the intensity from Day One, while the Golden Lions did. The Griffons raced to a 17-0 lead over Western Province and then held on in the second half to advance to the semifinal. The Blue Bulls proved to fit for SWD in a close game, winning 26-19. In the last quarterfinal clash, the Pumas dramatically scored in the last play of the match to nip Eastern Province at the line, winning 22-21.
The men's trophy winners are:
Shield: Pumas (Highveld), beating Free State 31-21
Bowl: Boland, beating Border 26-12
Plate: Western Province, beating Eastern Province 26-14
Third Place: Griffons, beating Pumas (Lowveld) 24-7
Cup: Blue Bulls, beating Golden Lions 40-10