Here we are, the final week of the 2013 Currie Cup season. This has been one of those seasons where we look back and say that there was never a dull moment. Some new young talent came to the party and showed us that there is still a great big future for SA Rugby.
As always every rugby supporter in South Africa has picked his or her team to support on Saturday. This is what makes the Currie Cup such a great competition. There are only two teams left and the whole of the nation has a team to support between the two. It is also in this time that people go a little crazy driving down the streets waving flags, hooting at each other, drinking and having a braai together.
So lets get to business. On Friday we will see the Pumas host the Griquas in the 2nd and last Currie Cup Promotion / Relegation game. The Pumas showed last weekend that they can cause an upset here and maybe get back into the Premier Division for 2014.
In the main event of the weekend, we see a Currie Cup Final with a familiar sight for for a second time when Western Province and The Sharks go into battle. This should be yet another epic Currie Cup Final, as most people will agree that the best two teams of this year’s Currie Cup is in the final.
Newlands Stadium in Cape Town is sold out for the occasion!
So folks, hold on to your seats… IT”S GOING TO BE A BUMPY RIDE!
Here’s a Preview of the weekend’s matches:
Currie Cup Promotion / Relegation Match
Steval Pumas vs GWK Griquas
Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
25 October 2013
k/o - 19:10 SA Time (17:10 GMT)
Pumas: 15 Coenie van Wyk, 14 JW Bell, 13 Wilmaure Louw, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 Rosco Speck man, 10 JC Roos, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 RW Kember, 7 Renaldo Bothma, 6 Corne Steenkamp (Captain), 5 Rudi Matthee, 4 Lubabalo Mtyanda, 3 De-Jay Terblanche, 2 Francois du Toit, 1 Vincent Koch.
Replacements: 16 Frank Herne, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Drew van Coller/Stephan Kotze, 19 Eduan Van Der Walt, 20, Uzair Cassiem, 21 Dewald Pretorius, 22 Jerome Pretorius.
Griquas: 15 Gouws Prinsloo, 14 Willie le Roux, 13 Jean Stemmet, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Jacques Coetzee, 8 Carel Greeff, 7 Burger Schoeman, 6 RJ Liebenberg, 5 Patrick O’Brien, 4 Rynhardt Landman, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Ryno Barnes (Captain), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Dobson, 17 Janro van Niekerk, 18 Nick Schonert, 19 Marnus Schoeman, 20 Marnus Hugo, 21 JP Nel, 22 Nico Scheepers.
This will be a fun match too watch. The Pumas lost narrowly to Griquas in Kimberley, so a 3 point win at home could see them kick the Griquas out of the Premier Division. The scenario still seems highly unlikely. It is difficult to predict a scoreline to this game as it is almost going to be played like a final, with a winner takes it’s all attitude. The safe bet here will still be to go for the Griquas as they showed last weekend that they are mature enough to get back into a game. Final score 25-18 to Griquas.
Currie Cup Final
DHL Western Province vs The Sharks
Newlands, Cape Town
26 October 2013
k/o – 17:30 SA Time (15:30 GMT)
Western Province: 15 Gio Aplon, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Jean de Villiers, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Cheslin Kolbe, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Deon Fourie (Captain), 5 De Kock Steenkamp, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Pat Cilliers, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Frans Malherbe, 17 Brok Harris, 18 Michael Rhodes, 19 Schalk Burger, 20 Nic Groom, 21 Kurt Coleman, 22 Juan de Jongh.
The Sharks: 15 SP Marais, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Louis Ludik, 12 Francois Steyn, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Keegan Daniel (Captain), 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Peet Marais, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Wiehahn Herbst, 18 Stephan Lewies, 19 Jacques Botes, 20 Cobus Reinach, 21 Fred Zeilinga, 22 Heimar Williams.
This will be the one too watch. Just comparing the teams, there is not a lot between these sides. Western Province at home will be a tall order to beat though. With the head to head stats the Sharks do edge Western Province, however when we look at finals between these sides it would seem that Western Province are the favourites here.
Only time can tell what the outcome here would be. The one thing we do know for sure is that both these teams are on top of their games and they are the two best sides in this year’s Currie Cup. This clash has been built up to be one of those classic Currie Cup games that will be spoken about for years to come. A safe bet here will be to put Western Province in for the win, it will be very close though and it does not seem likely that any team will score above 20 points. Final score 18-13 to Western Province.