Provinces won’t get any benched Boks for Currie Cup games

2012-10-02 00:00

IT makes little sense, but hooker Craig Burden and wing Lwazi Mvovo, along with six other Springbok squad members, will miss another round of Currie Cup rugby this weekend.

Bok coach Heyneke Meyer has a squad of 30 preparing for the final Rugby Championship Test against the All Blacks in Soweto on Saturday evening and it is expected that the players surplus to requirements — outside the Test match 22 and including Mvovo and Burden — will be released back to their provinces for Currie Cup action.

But the Bok management said last night there was an agreement made with provincial CEOs that no member of the squad — including the eight players not in the match 22 — would be released to play Currie Cup rugby.

“We’re not expecting to get any players back,” Sharks assistant coach Grant Bashford said yesterday. “The good news is that we didn’t lose anyone to injury in the Blue Bulls game.”

Bashford said the Sharks’ superior tactical kicking had helped them beat the Bulls.

“We only had 40% possession and territory in the game, but still managed to come away with a win.

“We managed to get under a few high balls and put pressure on them, getting numbers under the ball when we kicked, which turned little opportunities into something.”

Bashford said the players had showed character in the last 10 minutes when the Sharks were down to 14 men after Pieter Dixon was red-carded.

“Keegan [Daniel] asked for everyone to give 10% more to make up for the missing player and the guys managed to find something within themselves to do it.”

Looking ahead to Saturday, Bashford said that playing in Bloemfontein always provided a challenge.

“The Cheetahs are good at home and their mindset is to move the ball around there. They offer threats all over with the style of rugby they play.

“It’s about maximising opportunities, keeping possession because they love turnover ball and can hurt you with it. They’re a bit like us really, so the emphasis will be on keeping the ball and making sure we’re accurate and then trying to care of them when they attack.”

Bashford said they were looking forward to playing the game in dry conditions.

Saturday’s match kicks off at 7.10 pm after the Test in Soweto.

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