Friday 18 October 2013

Currie Cup For Beginners: Update

Playoff Lineup

Promotion/ Relegation

19 October 2013 Griquas v Pumas Hoffe Park Stadium, Kimberley
26 October 2013 Pumas v Griquas Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit


19 October 2013 Western Province v Golden Lions Newlands Stadium, Cape Town
19 October 2013 Natal Sharks v Free State Cheetahs Growthpoint Kings Park, Durban

Story So Far

Cheslin Kolbe impressed for Western Province
It's been an intriguing Currie Cup, with many tight games, with all teams apart from the Griquas with the potential to beat each other. Western Province somehow remained unbeaten, recording 2 draws but only one try bonus point. This was all the more impressive given that it was achieved without their Springboks, with the likes of Gio Aplon and Cheslin Kolbe stepping up out wide, and Deon Fourie impressing after moving from hooker to openside flanker. Nizam Carr has also been one of the standout players for them, and if it weren't for the returning Duane Vermuelen, Carr would be one of the standouts for the Stormers in next years Super Rugby. Damian Allende, a 21 year old inside centre has also impressed in the absence of Jean de Villiers, and it will be interesting to view his progress in the coming years.

Natal Sharks started badly, giving the Griquas their only win in week one, but managed to come back and secure 2nd place. Their returning stars will give them the edge against the Cheetahs in the semi finals. The Sharks managed to get losing bonus points in all 3 of their losses, and were a little more adventurous than Western Province, managing 2 try bonus points. 20 year old flyhalf Fred Zeilinga finished the regular season as top points scorer. Zeilinga represented the Sharks at every level from Under 13, but hasn't represented South Africa at any level, being overlooked for Tony Jantjies and Handre Pollard of the Bulls.

The Free State Cheetahs, continued their Super Rugby form the Cheetahs finishing 3rd. Raymond Rhule finished top try scorer with 7 in 10 games, while Sarel Pretorius and Boom Prinsloo impressed.

The Golden Lions produced a mixed season, with the highlight being the destruction of the Blue Bulls 23-62 in "fortress" Loftus Versfeld. The Lions scored the most tries in the competition, and had the most try bonus points with 5 with only 4 wins. Elton Jantjies revelled in the less structured approach of the Lions after returning from the Stormers, while Derek Minnie impressed and looks set to make the Lions competitive in next year's Super Rugby.

The Blue Bulls, even without their Springboks, were terrible. The form of their outhalves didn't help, with both Tony Jantjies and Handre Pollard in inconsistent form, and coach Pine Pienaar's decisions to rotate them throughout the season.

Players Signed For Super Rugby

William Small Smith (Blue Bulls) Outside Centre

Ricky Schroeder (Boland Caviliers) Scrumhalf

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