Bulls charge to top of the table as Lions pip Province and Sharks thump Griquas

2008-08-03 00:00

The Blue Bulls moved back to the top of the Currie Cup standings with an emphatic weekend win over the Falcons, but the Lions earned the most telling victory of round seven as they downed Western Province at Ellis Park on Saturday.

The Lions secured fourth place on the log with their 27-13 win over Western Province to make up for the disappointment of going down 11-16 to the Sharks on the previous weekend.

“It wasn’t the most attractive game,” said Cobus Grobbelaar, the Lions’ captain, “but we’ll take it anyway.”

WP captain Gcobani Bobo was disappointed: “They hit us hard at the breakdown and their defence was strong,” he said.

The Lions (21) are now four points ahead of the fifth-placed WP (17), with the Sharks in third place, the Free StateCheetahs second and the Blue Bulls in first place — all on 23 points.

In other action on Saturday, the Sharks easily dealt with a potentially tricky fixture against the Griquas in Kimberley. The Durbanites have not been in top form of late, but they bounced back with an emphatic 44-15 win in Kimberley — traditionally a tough venue for visiting teams.

The Sharks outscored their hosts seven tries to two, their 25-8 lead at half-time — including the four-try bonus point —- proving too much for the visitors, who just a few weeks ago launched a stunning second-half comeback against the Lions.

Consistent Sharks flanker Jacques Botes scored a brace of tries, leaving him as the top try-scorer in the Currie Cup with six — two ahead of Lions star Earl Rose, who passed the 100-point mark this season in his team’s win over WP.

The Free State Cheetahs were made to work hard by the Boland Cavaliers in their 15-10 win in Wellington on Saturday, the home side’s committed defence limiting the reigning champions to just two tries on the day.

Scorers

Griquas 15 Sharks 44

Griquas: Tries by Sarel Pretorius and Bjorn Basson. Conrad Barnard, one penalty, one conversion.

Sharks: Tries by Jacques Botes (2), Chris Jordaan (2), Waylon Murray, Riaan Swanepoel, Deon Carstens; Kicks: Stefan Terblanche (penalty), Monty Dumond (3 conversions).

Lions 27 WP 13

Lions: Tries: Franco van der Merwe, Jano Vermaak, Doppies le Grange. Conversions: Earl Rose (3). Penalties: Rose (2) Western Province: Try: Nick Koster. Conversion: Willem de Waal. Penalties: Willem de Waal (2).

Boland 10 Free State 15 .

Boland: Try by Danwell Demas, conversion and penalty Justin Peach. Cheetahs - tries by Fabian Juries and Richardt Strauss. Chris Rossouw one conversion and penalty.

Next fixtures

Wellington: Cavaliers v Falcons

Bloemfontein: Cheetahs v Griquas

Cape Town: Province v Sharks

Pretoria: Bulls v Lions

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