So, we find ourselves close to the end of yet another great Currie Cup season, but don’t get sad because there are still 5 big Currie Cup clashes left – 2 Promotion / Relegation matches, 2 semi-finals and the BIG Currie Cup final.
Our starter for the weekend will be a Promotion / Relegation match on Friday evening between GWK Griquas and Steval Pumas in Kimberley. This will be followed by two main courses on Saturday. The one course will be served Newlands style with a side of “big hits”, whilst the second course will be served Kings Park style with a side of “open and running rugby”. Desert will be a choice between pure bliss or extreme sadness, depending on main course selection.
Here’s a Preview of the weekend’s matches:
Currie Cup Promotion / Relegation Match
GWK Griquas vs Steval Pumas
GWK Park, Kimberley
18 October 2013
k/o - 19:10 SA Time (17:10 GMT)
GWK Griquas: 15 Gouws Prinsloo, 14 Willie le Roux, 13 Jean Stemmet, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Marnus Hugo, 8 Burger Schoeman, 7 RJ Liebenberg, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Jaco Nepgen, 4 Ligtoring Landman, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Ryno Barnes (Captain), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacments: 16 Matthew Dobson, 17 Janro van Niekerk, 18 Patrick O’Brien, 19 Carel Greeff, 20 Jacques Coetzee, 21 JP Nel, 22 Nico Scheepers.
Pumas: 15 Coenie van Wyk, 14 JW Bell, 13 Wilmaure Louw, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 Rosco Speck man, 10 Carl Bezuidenhout, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 RW Kember, 7 Renaldo Bothma, 6 Corne Steenkamp (Captain), 5 Eduan Van Der Walt, 4 Rudi Matthee, 3 Ivann Espag, 2 Frank Herne, 1 Corné Fourie.
Replacements: 16 Francois du Toit, 17 Vincent Koch, 18 De-Jay Terblanche, 19 Lubabalo Mtyanda, 20, Uzair Cassiem, 21 JC Roos, 22 Dewald Pretorius.
Promotion / Relegation matches always deliver some great rugby, due to the fact that there is a team (in this case the Pumas) which would like to play Currie Cup Premier Division rugby next year. As a result they will be throwing everything they have at the Griquas. These sides have met 4 times since 2010. All 4 occasion were in the 2010 and 2011 seasons when there were still 8 teams in the Premier Division. The Griquas lead the stats with quite a big margin, having won 3 out of the 4 clashes. This year does paint a different picture as the Pumas are in good form and the Griquas are not. It is still doubtfull however that the yet unbeaten Pumas will beat the Griquas in Kimberley. A scoreline close to 48-31 in favour of the Griquas could be a likely result.
Semi Final 1
DHL Western Province vs MTN Golden Lions
Newlands, Cape Town
19 October 2013
DHL Western Province: 15 Gio Aplon, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Jean de Villiers (Vice-captain), 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.
Golden Lions: 15 Marnitz Boshoff, 14 Chrysander Botha, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Andries Coetzee, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Derick Minnie (Captain), 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Chris van Zyl, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 CJ van der Linde
Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Julian Redelinghuys, 19 Willie Britz, 20 Warwick Tecklenburg 21 Tiaan Meyer, 22 Robert de Bruyn.
This has become quite a regular Currie Cup feature where we see the Golden Lions and Western Province take each other on in a semi final. They have done this in 2011, 2012 and now in 2013. In 2011 the Golden Lions beat Western Province and went on to win the Currie Cup. In 2012 Western Province beat the Golden Lions and also went on to win the Currie Cup. Could history repeat itself and could we see the winner here go on to win the Currie Cup once more. All the statistics have this game set to a 1 point margin, with the Lions edging Western Province. These sides have met each other 10 times since 2010 and including this year’s round robin matches. The Golden Lions have won 5 of these clashes, Western Province only 4 and there was one draw earlier this season. If all 10 matches are taken into consideration the Golden Lions should beat Western Province 26-25 and if we only take the last two semi-finals into consideration the Golden Lions should win 23-21 on average. Either way, this one will go down to the wire and with a scoreline that close, it is difficult to pick a winner.
Semi Final 2
The Sharks vs Toyota Free State Cheetahs
Growthpoint KINGS PARK, Durban
12 October 2013
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 Jean Deysel, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Peet Marais, 3 Wiehahn Herbst, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Danie Mienie, 18 Stephan Lewies, 19 Jacques Botes, 20 Cobus Reinach, 21 Fred Zeilinga, 22 Heimar Williams.
Vrystaat Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Riaan Smit, 13 Johann Sadie, 12 Robert Ebersohn, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Elgar Watts, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Pieter Labuschagne, 6 Boom Prinsloo, 5 Lodewyk De Jager, 4 Francois Uys, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Adriaan Strauss (Captain), 1 Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Schalk van der Merwe, 18 Teboho Mohoje, 19 Freddy Ngoza, 20 Piet van Zyl, 21 Johan Goosen, 22 Ryno Benjamin.
This clash should be interesting as well. The Sharks have a big lead over the Free State Cheetahs when we look at the statistics, as the Free State Cheetahs have only managed 1 win against the Sharks since 2010. They have only met once in a semi-final since 2010 and this was in 2011 where the Sharks won 20-13. The Sharks are huge favourites to take this one and there is no clear indication to state otherwise. A scoreline close to 32-26 in favour of the Sharks will be a safe bet.