Currie Cup, Round Six - Teams and Predictions
THE RETURN: After a number of cancellations, we will finally get some Currie Cup action.
The tournament returns with two matches scheduled for Wednesday as the halfway mark of the competition comes into view.
The table-topping Pumas are not in action on Wednesday and will keenly follow the matches in Johannesburg and Bloemfontein to see how the results will influence the standings.
The match between the Sharks and the Bulls scheduled for Durban has been called off due to the security concerns in KwaZulu-Natal. A decision on the result and log points will be made at a later stage.
Wednesday’s first match will see the Lions host Griquas at Ellis Park. Then we are off to Bloemfontein where the Cheetahs are up against Western Province.
We take a closer look at Wednesday’s games!
Wednesday, July 21:
Lions v Griquas
(Ellis Park, Johannesburg – Kick-off: 14.30; 12.30 GMT)
The Lions will be keen to move up on the log, but the men from Johannesburg will not underestimate their visitors, who showed recently against the Cheetahs and WP what they are capable of.
The last time the Lions and Griquas met, lightning over Kimberley brought an early end to the clash and the visitors were awarded the win (20-17) after the weather conditions forced players off the field.
It happened in the opening round of the 2020 season and Griquas led by 17-13 at the break, but early in the second half, they conceded a penalty try at a scrum, which was enough to secure the win for the Lions.
The Tafel Lager Griquas will be out to claim victory over the Sigma Lions tomorrow following their previous encounter in Kimberley.🥶
— Carling Currie Cup (@TheCurrieCup) July 20, 2021
Lions head coach Ivan van Rooyen knows that his team will have to be at their best to beat a confident Griquas team
“We are expecting a nice physical and high tempo game,” said Van Rooyen.
“Griquas are a team that likes to attack and they also got a good kicking game.
“It is going to be a great home game for us after we missed one or two games.”
On his team announcement, Van Rooyen added: “It is nice to give a first senior cap to FP Pelser and Travis Gordon.
“It’s great for the junior guys to get an opportunity but some seniors are coming back.
“It is a great opportunity for us at home I am really excited about the game and looking forward to it.”
Last 10 Currie Cup outings
2013: Lions won 38-32, Kimberley
2013: Lions won 35-28, Johannesburg
2014: Lions won 46-8, Kimberley
2015: Lions won 29-19, Johannesburg
2016: Griquas won 30-24, Kimberley
2017: Lions won 48-43, Johannesburg
2017: Lions won 34-17, Kimberley
2018: Lions won 62-41, Johannesburg
2019: Lions won 27-26, Kimberley
2020: Lions won 20-17, Kimberley
@rugby365com: Lions by eight points.
Lions: 15 EW Viljoen, 14 Stean Pienaar, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Rabz Maxwane, 10 Jordan Hendrikse, 9 Morne van den Berg, 8 Francke Horn (captain), 7 Sibusiso Sangweni, 6 MJ Pelser, 5 Reinhardt Nothnagel, 4 Ruben Schoeman, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Sti Sithole.
Replacements: 16 PJ Botha, 17 Ruan Dreyer, 18 Carlu Sadie, 19 FP Pelser, 20 Travis Gordon, 21 Andre Warner, 22 Fred Zeilinga, 23 Duncan Matthews.
Griquas: 15 Ashlon Davids, 14 Daniel Kasende, 13 Jay Cee Nel, 12 Johnathan Francke, 11 Eduan Keyter, 10 George Whitehead, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Ruan Steenkamp (captain), 7 Hanru Sirgel, 6 Gideon van der Merwe, 5 Cameron Lindsay, 4 Adre Smith, 3 Janu Botha, 2 Janco Uys, 1 Mox Mxoli.
Replacements – from: 16 HJ Luus, 17 Andrew Beerwinkel, 18 Andries Schutte, 19 Mzwanele Zito, 20 Sibabalo Qom, 21 Raegan Oranje, 22 Tinus de Beer, 23 Ederies Arendse, 24 Andrew Kuhn, 25 Jeandre Leonard, 26 Theo Boshoff.
Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge
Assistant referees: Local appointments
TMO: Egon Seconds
Cheetahs v Western Province
(Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein – Kick-off: 16.45; 14.45 GMT)
With cancelled matches being the main feature of this season’s Currie Cup tournament, Cheetahs head coach Hawies Fourie is not paying too much attention to the current standings.
The Cheetahs will face Western Province in Bloemfontein and the home side will almost certainly need a win to stay in touch with the teams above them in the standings.
“I can’t say how this will all pan out later in the season,” Fourie told a virtual media briefing from Bloemfontein.
“I am not concerning myself with the current standings,” he said of his team which finds itself in last place.
“Given the points that are being handed out for cancelled matches, I am not sure there is value in that [the standings].
“The Bulls have had five games, of which they won one and lost one. They got points for three games they did not play.
“I don’t think the standings are a true reflection of the relative strengths of the teams in the competition.”
Fourie added that he hopes in the second half of the season all the games will take place and that it results in the standings becoming a true reflection of the competition.
“We hope the race for semifinal paces will be a fair contest,” the Cheetahs coach said.
Meanwhile, Western Province captain Ernst van Rhyn said his team will be looking to bounce back from their shock defeat to Griquas in Cape Town.
The Capetonians, in the guise of the Stormers, are also coming off a 3-49 defeat to the British and Irish Lions.
“It was a great experience against the Lions and it is something we will remember for years to come, but our main goal is to win the Currie Cup again,” said Van Rhyn.
“It’s not difficult to get the team up again. I think everyone is really excited about the opportunity and we know it wasn’t good enough against Griquas.
“We want to right the wrongs in the coming weeks and to show the people that when our backs are against the wall and have a few key players out we can still fight and hopefully we can take it through to the end.”
Last 10 Currie Cup outings
2013: WP won 29-27, Bloemfontein
2014: WP won 34-29, Bloemfontein
2015: WP won 9-3, Cape Town
2015: Cheetahs won 28-21, Bloemfontein
2016: Cheetahs won 32-25, Cape Town
2017: Cheetahs won 30-17, Bloemfontein
2018: WP won 57-14, Cape Town
2018: WP won 32-0, Cape Town
2019: Cheetahs won 38-33, Bloemfontein
2021: WP won 31-29, Bloemfontein
@rugby365com: WP by three points.
Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Duncan Saal, 13 David Brits, 12 Siya Masuku, 11 Cohen Jasper, 10 Brandon Thomson, 9 Ruan Pienaar (captain), 8 Aidon Davis, 7 Junior Pokomela, 6 Jeandré Rudolph, 5 Jean Droste, 4 Rynier Bernardo, 3 Hencus van Wyk, 2 Marnus van der Merwe, 1 Aluluthu Tshakweni.
Replacements: 16 Louis van der Westhuizen, 17 Cameron Dawson, 18 Conraad van Vuuren, 19 Victor Sekekete, 20 Jacques Potgieter, 21 Zinedine Booysen, 22 Reinhardt Fortuin, 23 Chris Smit.
Western Province: 15 Sergeal Petersen, 14 Tristan Leyds, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Cornel Smit, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Tim Swiel, 9 Godlen Masimla, 8 Evan Roos, 7 Marcel Theunissen, 6 Nama Xaba, 5 JD Schickerling, 4 Ernst van Rhyn (captain), 3 Neethling Fouche, 2 Andre-Hugo Venter, 1 Leon Lyons.
Replacements: 16 JJ Kotze, 17 Dian Bleuler, 18 Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, 19 Simon Miller, 20 Johan du Toit, 21 Thomas Bursey, 22 Sacha Mngomezulu, 23 Leolin Zas.
Referee: Morné Ferreira
Assistant referees: Local appointments
TMO: Marius van der Westhuizen