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Griquas

Jimmy Stonehouse

Unhappy camper: Jimmy Stonehouse

Steval Pumas coach Jimmy Stonehouse has blasted his team after their 31-27 loss to GWK Griquas in Kimberley on Saturday.

The supersport.com website reports, Stonehouse didn’t hold back as he said his team’s performance was nowhere near their normal standards and that he expected an improvement this weekend as they head to Ellis Park to face the Xerox Golden Lions in their next Absa Currie Cup match.

“I think it was the worst performance we have given in the history of Puma rugby,” Stonehouse said.

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SuperBruRound 3 of the Rugby Championship ended in heartbreak for the Springboks when they went down to Australia by 1 point in the final few minutes of what was not an entertaining match at all.

The referee, the yellow card to Bryan Habana, the failed touchfinder by Morné Steyn and various other reasons have already been dissected and discussed, so we won’t dwell on those.

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GWK Griquas

Griqua players celebrate their first win of the Currie Cup.

The mini-slump being experienced by the defending champions, the Sharks, is a key feature of the Currie Cup at its midway point in league play.

Two losses on the trot – after a three-match winning start that hadn’t produced much champagne rugby and was already delivering certain warning signs – have left the Durban-based side with an increasingly precarious hold on a “semi-final” slot.

They lie fourth on the overall table and with an awful lot of work to do in the second half of their ordinary-season roster if they are to recover enough ground to challenge for rights to a possible home final – perhaps simply making sure they actually get into the last four must be a shorter-term, lesser objective now.

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SuperBruThis weekend sees the resumption of The Rugby Championship with the All Blacks hosting the Pumas in Napier and the Springboks traveling to Perth to face the Wallabies.

Last weekend we had the Round 4 of the ABSA Currie Cup and there has been some movement at the top of the Rugby-Talk SuperBru group.

The 6 Important games we focus on which are played this weekend, consists of the 2 Rugby Championship Test matches as well as 4 ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division matches.

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ABSA Currie CupXerox Golden Lions keep EP Kings at bay

The Golden Lions got their Currie Cup rugby title bid back on track when they scored a bonus-point win in overcoming a courageous Eastern Province Kings outfit 41-22 at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth on Saturday night.

With Ruan Combrinck in outstanding form with the boot, slotting all seven of his kicks at goal with five conversions and two penalties, the Lions will be satisfied to come away from Port Elizabeth with five points.

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Free State CheetahsHenco Venter will start at lock in the only change to the Free State Cheetahs’ team to face Griquas in Kimberley on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 15:00 SA Time (13:00 GMT).

Waltie Vermeulen will take his place on the bench, in the only other change to the match day squad.

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Kobus van Wyk

WP flyer, Kobus van Wyk

Surprise, surprise… there are the Sharks and Western Province, back dominating Currie Cup rugby.

Many changes could still happen, of course, given that the 2014 competition is not quite a third of the way through the pre-knockout phase, but it is interesting nevertheless that the two coastal powers have already seized just a hint of a grip.

It will only increase speculation that the pair may be set for a third successive meeting in the final this year, something that has not happened since the Blue Bulls and Cheetahs met in each of the 2004, 2005 and 2006 showpieces.

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Cell C SharksA long-range penalty by Fred Zeilinga four minutes from time helped the Sharks snatch a last-ditch 19-16 victory over the Free State Cheetahs in their Currie Cup clash at Kings Park on Saturday night.

The home flyhalf kicked 14 points in total, with the other five coming through a late try by Tonderai Chavhanga.

However, the visitors will rue what might have been after leading the game for most of the evening thanks to a brilliant Clayton Blommetjies’ try and the boot of Willie du Plessis.

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Steval PumasGWK GriquasPumas (11) 33 / 15 (12) Griquas (Final Score)

The Steval Pumas and GWK Griquas did battle in the ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division at

Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit at 19:10 SA Time (17:10 GMT).

This was the live match discussion Article.

The match was broadcast LIVE on SuperSport 1 & CSN on TV in SA.

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Currie CupThis past weekend saw Round 2 of the ABSA Currie Cup of 2014.

As usual 4 games were played, with the Cell C Sharks beating Steal Pumas 34 / 17, DHL Western Province demolishing the Vodacom Blue Bulls by 41 / 17, Xerox Goldenlions hammering EP Kings by 60 / 19 and the Toyota Free State Cheetahs beating GWK Griquas 34 / 27.

 

WP demolish Blue Bulls

DHL Western Province scored three tries either side of halftime as they demolished the Vodacom Blue Bulls 41-17 (halftime 19-6) in a scintillating Absa Currie Cup encounter at DHL Newlands in Cape Town on Saturday.

Province ran in six tries through Pat Cilliers, Michael Rhodes, Nizaam Carr, Juan de Jongh and a brace from Seabelo Senatla while replacement hooker Bongi Mbonambi nabbed one for the visitors.

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Brad Macleod-Henderson

Brad Macleod-Henderson

Cell C Sharks coach Brad Macleod-Henderson is happy with his side’s victory over Griquas in round one of this year’s Currie Cup competition with the Durban-based outfit besting the Peacock Blues 31-24 in closely contested affair in Kimberley on Saturday afternoon.

The visitors enjoyed a comfortable lead of 18-3 at half-time after Griquas centre Jonathan Francke was shown a Red Card in the seventh minute for a dangerous tackle.

It left the Sharks with one man over on attack as well as defence but, in the end, they had to work hard to best a motivated home side.

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Rory Arnold

Brumbies recruit Rory Arnold, the tallest player in Super Rugby.

If you thought NSW Watarahs and Australian Wallabies battering ram Will Skelton was big, meet ACT Brumbies recruit Rory Arnold, the tallest player in Super Rugby.

The 208cm, 130kg lock created huge headlines last year after being involved in an alleged biting incident in South Africa, but Arnold is determined to make a big impact at the Brumbies for the right reasons.

While man mountain Skelton weighs in at 140kg, at 203cm he can’t match Arnold, who is equal in height with former South African player Andries Bekker. They are the tallest players in Super Rugby’s 19-year history.

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Hawies Fourie

Hawies Fourie

Griquas coach Hawies Fourie has rewarded the squad which earned Currie Cup qualification by retaining much of the team for the Sharks clash at GWK Park on Saturday.

The Kimberley-based side regained their status after ending the qualifying round undefeated.

“Now that we are once again part of the Currie Cup, we don’t just want to be a number. We want to be a real contender in the competition and we hope to use the momentum that we got form the qualifiers to achieve just that,” Fourie said.

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Kick-off for 2014′s Currie Cup is almost upon us with a full set of fixtures scheduled for 9 August.

Sportingbet have come to the party by pricing up a market for the overall winner of this tournament.

With that in mind, here’s our take on who has a major shot at the trophy and which sides may struggle to keep up with the pace.

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Luther Obi

Luther Obi scored 4 tries against the hapless Border Bulldogs

The Leopards scored 15 tries in beating the Border Bulldogs 103-15 (halftime 54-3) in a lost cause at Profert Olen Park on Saturday.

The Leopards knew they had to win with a bonus point to have any hope of catching the Griquas in the race to the Currie Cup Premier Division, and they did what they had to do with clinical efficiency in a free-flowing rout.

They kicked off with hope in their heart and a determination to push all the way. But it was all in vain as, at about the time they put boot to ball, the Griquas scored their fourth try against SWD Eagles and all but sealed their promotion after just half an hour’s play in George.

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ABSA Currie CupGriquas took another giant leap towards regaining their place in the top echelon of the domestic game in South Africa.

The Kimberley-based outfit raced clear at the top of the standings in the Currie Cup qualifying competition, after beating the Griffons 43-24 in the Northwest Stadium in Welkom at the weekend.

Griquas ran in seven tries to accumulate the full five points and now find themselves six points above the second-placed Leopards, who had a bye this weekend.

In other Round Four matches at the weekend the Falcons beat the Border Bulldogs 54-40, while the SWD Eagles edged the Boland Cavaliers 21-17.

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GWK GriquasLeopardsThe Leopards and Griquas maintained their dominant form in the second round of the Currie Cup Premier Division qualifying round as they secured back-to-back victories to remain in the top two positions on the log table.

The Leopards thumped the Valke 45-22 in Kempton Park on Friday, while Griquas beat the Boland Cavaliers 21-3 in Wellington on Saturday, to remain the only unbeaten teams in the series.

The Leopards’ bonus-point victory, however, allowed them to leapfrog the Kimberley side for the top spot on the log.

In the other match, the SWD Eagles pipped the Griffons 40-37 in George.

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GWK GriquasVodacom CupGWK Griquas dethroned the defending champions to clinch the Vodacom Cup for the 5th time when they beat the Golden Lions by 30-6 in the final at GWK Park in Kimberley on Friday evening.

These 2 teams are now the undoubted kings of Vodacom Cup rugby, both with 5 titles out of the 17 on offer since the inception of the competition in 1998.

It was GWK Griquas’ first Vodacom Cup title since 2009 and also avenged their home defeat in the in the final seconds of the 2012 final against DHL Western Province. They won their other Vodacom Cup titles in 1998, when they also beat the Golden Lions in the final, as well as 2005 and 2007.

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Vodacom CupGolden LionsGWK GriquasThe 2 biggest ‘dogs’ in the history of the Vodacom Cup, the Golden Lions and GWK Griquas, take on each other in Kimberley on Friday evening in the grand finale of the competition in 2014.

Between these 2 sides, who will clash at 19:10 SA Time at GWK Park, they have won the Vodacom Cup 9 times since its inception in 1998. That means more than half of all the titles have gone either to Johannesburg or Kimberley.

It’s the Lions’ 2nd visit to Kimberley this year. They lost their Round 5 encounter at GWK Park by 33-18.

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Vodacom CupThe two most successful teams in Vodacom Cup history, GWK Griquas and the Golden Lions, will contest the 2014 final after both won their semi-finals away from home this weekend.

In both matches, the team that scored more tries were knocked out and the points’ difference in the semi-finals in Nelspruit and Pretoria was a single point.

On Friday evening in Nelspruit, the Steval Pumas lost their first match of the season when they went down by 14-15 to four-time champions, GWK Griquas, after a last-minute penalty goal by fullback Gouws Prinsloo.

The visitors to the Mbombela Stadium had the best possible start when flyhalf Francois Brummer put them ahead by 3-0 after only 20 seconds with a well-struck drop-goal.

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Vodacom CupWith 12 titles out of 16 between them, three of the four teams contesting the Vodacom Cup semi-finals this weekend – all of them from the North Section – know a thing or two about winning this competition.

It’s only the Steval Pumas, runners up in 2013 and the only unbeaten team this season, that hasn’t won the Vodacom Cup.

But the Golden Lions, whose title last year was their fifth, GWK Griquas (four-times champions) and the Vodacom Blue Bulls (three-time champions) have dominated the competition between them since its inception in 1998.

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Vodacom CupGWK Griquas scored the biggest playoff victory in the history of the Vodacom Cup as all four teams from the North Section proved too strong for their counterparts from the South and progressed to the semi-finals.

With three of the winning margins over the weekend between one and seven points, GWK Griquas’ 84-15 victory over the SWD Eagles perhaps best illustrated the dominance the North had over the South.

The previous biggest victory in a playoff match also involved the team from the Northern Cape, when they lost 73-7 to the Golden Lions in the 1999 Final.

The Golden Lions and Vodacom Blue Bulls, with eight Vodacom Cup titles between them, had to travel for their quarter-finals, while the Steval Pumas and GWK Griquas won their playoffs at home.

This means that for a second successive year the winner of the Vodacom Cup will come from the North Section – last year the Golden Lions proved too strong for the Steval Pumas in the Final in Nelspruit.

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Vodacom CupThe Steval Pumas, Cell C Sharks XV, GWK Griquas and Toyota Free State XV will host the four Vodacom Cup quarter-finals after the pool phase of the competition came to an exciting conclusion this weekend.

It was an exciting end to the competition in 2014, with a total of 75 tries scored in the eight pool matches at an average of just over nine per match, or one try every eight or so minutes.

While the North Section went pretty much as expected and the Steval Pumas managed the become the only team to go through their pool matches unbeaten, the last round in the South Section saw the log getting a proper overhaul following upsets in Durban and George on Friday evening.

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GWK GriquasMartin BezuidenhoutTiaan MeyerGriekwas het die dienste van twee Leeus-staatmakers vir die Vodacombeker- en Curriebeker-reeks bekom.

Die haker Martin Bezuidenhout en die skrumskakel Tiaan Meyer, wat albei sterk aanspraakmakers op insluiting by die Cheetahs se Superrugby-span sal wees, sluit hulle later vandeesweek by die span in die Diamantstad aan.

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