Currie Cup

Brandy flows, braais blaze at Griqua Park ahead of historic Currie Cup final: 'Rugby is life'

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Griquas fans gather ahead of the Currie Cup final (Lloyd Burnard)
Griquas fans gather ahead of the Currie Cup final (Lloyd Burnard)

In Kimberley 

The brandy was flowing and the braais were raging from as early as 09:00 at Griqua Park on Saturday as fans congregated for what many are calling the biggest day in the union's history. 

At 15:00, hosts Griquas will take on the Pumas in the Currie Cup final. 

Some have suggested that this year's tournament has lost some of its value due to the big unions - Western Province, the Bulls, the Sharks and Lions - having to prioritise the United Rugby Championship this season.

Try telling that to these Kimberley locals. 

"I was here in 1998 when we lost the semi-final to Western Province," said diehard fan Jaco Burger, nursing a brandy poured into an old coffee jar. 

"That one hurt, but today means everything.

"Around 130 years ago the Currie Cup was born, and Mr. Currie gave that cup to Griquas. This is what it's about. Rugby is life."

Jacques van Wyk confirmed to Sport24 that around 180 rugby-crazed locals from the small town of Hartswater were making the 90-minute journey. 

"That's about the entire population of Hartswater," he laughed. 

"This is a day of history and we don't know when we'll see something like this again."

Others, like Chris Louw, have no intention of going through the gates into Griqua Park to watch the match. The party and the 'gees', he insists, is in the outside area.

"We can hear from the roars and groans whether we are winning or losing," he said. 

Sport24 understands that six members of the class of 1970 - the last time Griquas won the Currie Cup - were on their way to the stadium too. 

Jaco Burger (Lloyd Burnard)
Jaco Burger (Lloyd Burnard)
Chris Louw (Lloyd Burnard)
Chris Louw (Lloyd Burnard)
Jacques van Wyk and Susan Venter (Lloyd Burnard)
Jacques van Wyk and Susan Venter (Lloyd Burnard)
Sandra Koekemoer (left) and Belinda du Plooy (Lloy
Sandra Koekemoer (left) and Belinda du Plooy (Lloyd Burnard))
Fans at Griqua Park getting their breakfast ready
Fans at Griqua Park getting their breakfast ready (Lloyd Burnard)
From left: JG Oelofse, Petrie Oelofse and Theuns B
From left: JG Oelofse, Petrie Oelofse and Theuns Barnard (Lloyd Burnard)
Burgue Ekkerd (left) and Theuns Kleynhans (Lloyd B
Burgue Ekkerd (left) and Theuns Kleynhans (Lloyd Burnard)
Get the bets in! (Lloyd Burnard)
Get the bets in! (Lloyd Burnard)
The Pumas juniors are in town to support their tea
The Pumas juniors are in town to support their team (Lloyd Burnard)

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Fixtures
Thu 14 Apr 22 13:00 PM (SAST)
Sigma Lions
The Windhoek Draught Griquas
Wits Rugby Stadium, Johannesburg
SuperSport
Fri 15 Apr 22 14:45 PM (SAST)
DHL Western Province
Toyota Free State XV
DHL Stadium, Cape Town
Sat 16 Apr 22 15:00 PM (SAST)
Cell C Sharks XV
Vodacom Bulls
Hollywoodbets Kings Park, Durban
SuperSport
Results
Sat 11 Jun 22
Toyota Free State XV
Toyota Free State XV 35
Vodacom Bulls
Vodacom Bulls 5
Fri 10 Jun 22
Airlink Pumas
Airlink Pumas 44
The Windhoek Draught Griquas
The Windhoek Draught Griquas 45
Fri 10 Jun 22
DHL Western Province
DHL Western Province 28
Cell C Sharks XV
Cell C Sharks XV 21
Logs
Team
P
W
PTS
Team Logo
1. Toyota Cheetahs
12
10
48
Team Logo
2. Vodacom Bulls
12
9
47
Team Logo
3. The Windhoek Draught Griquas
12
7
36
Team Logo
4. Airlink Pumas
12
5
29