Dynamic Griquas stun Lions
The Griquas secured their first victory of the season in fine style on Friday, running in five tries to stun the Golden Lions 42-32 in Johannesburg.
Isn't Currie Cup rugby wonderful? It has been wonderful since 1892 and still it is wonderful. It was wonderful last weekend and the start to this weekend in Johannesburg was a delight.
What a match!
From the very start Griquas, winless this Currie Cup season, changed their whole way of doing things. They ran. They passed quickly, they got ball quickly and they ran. And how it paid off.
The Golden Lions on the other hand played like a team waiting for success to happen. They waited once too often.
The Golden Lions scored 14 points in two minutes and were suddenly at 35-32. Two penalties put them on the attack and they mauled from a line-out. They moved forward as the Griquas hurled themselves into them on defence. The maul stopped. And it stopped again and the referee told them to 'use it or lose it'. They waited. It was a fatal wait.
The scrum was awarded to the Griquas well in their 22 and twice the Golden Lions had destroyed their scrum. Three times they had been penalised at the scrum, but this one, well in their 22, they won and brave eighthman Leon Karemaker picked up and charged forward.
Then the Griquas stayed true to what had brought them to the brink of success. They ran. They kept on running. They were quick, they sped downfield. Marnitz Boshoff broke. When he was tackled, Willie le Roux was right there to flick a pass to unmarked Jean Stemmet who scored with two minutes to play. Four minutes and umpteen phases had taken Griquas from defence in their 22 to a great try and victory.
From the start of the match Griquas played quickly and especially to right wing Jannie Boshoff who had a great game till he left injured. In fact the first part of the match was all Griquas with their rapid way of playing and yet they found themselves behind.
François Brummer, who kicked splendidly all night, kicked a penalty when Jaco Kriel was penalised at a tackle and then Griquas carried on attacking but Jannie Boshoff, tackled, popped the ball back and off went Ross Cronje for a try. It was the first time that a Golden Lion had run with the ball. 5-3 after 6 minutes.
Rynhardt Landman, whom some call Ligtoring, was penalised and Elton Jantjies goaled. 8-3 after 9 minutes. The expected victory was on its way notwithstanding the energies of the men from Kimberley.
Jannie Boshoff raced on an overlap, Landman was close and then Griquas went wide left to Rocco Jansen who scored. Brummer converted from far out. 13-8, and the Golden Lions did not regain the lead.
Griquas attacked with Karemaker prominent but they knocked on. They came running back with Le Roux involved several times till the mercurial fullback skated around on the outside and played inside to Karemaker who played out to Jannie Boshoff who scored. 20-8 after 22 minutes.
Jantjies goaled a penalty and Andries Coetzee countered brilliantly but Britz tackled high and Brummer made it 23-11. The Golden Lions kicked off and Britz won the ball and charged. He gave to Lionel Mapoe who popped to Kriel, who scored. 23-18 after 33 minutes.
From the kick-off Jantjies kicked a long way downfield. Le Roux ran and then kicked high. Brummer chased and jumped for the ball. It was knocked free, and Le Roux grabbed and gave to Landman who gave to Barnes who had team-mates to drive him over in the left corner.
Under the new TMO extension, the referee referred to TMO to see if there had been a knock-on by Brummer but it was not clear and obvious. The try stood. 28-18 after 35 minutes, the score that ended the exciting half.
Griquas carried on running, Le Roux often at flyhalf. Brummer grubbered for Jannie Boshoff on the right. Brummer broke and they went left where Le Roux cut between two to score. 35-18 after 44 minutes, and Griquas had a bonus point.
There was much to-ing and fro-ing as the Golden Lions became desperate and then came a surprising try.
Le Roux kicked downfield into the Golden Lions 22 where Coetzee got the ball. He ran to the left, chipped, gathered and gave to Anthony Volmink who raced 40 metres to score at the posts. Coetzee converted. 35-25 after 68 minutes.
Griquas kicked off and Mapoe gave to Volmink on the left touchline. On the left touchline he beat Jansen, then Marnitz Boshoff and then Justin Downey as he raced to score in the corner. Butch James converted from touch. 35-32 with 11 minutes to play and at this stage it was all Golden Lions – till they waited too long.
Man of the Match; Jannie Boshoff was excellent but went off early. Energetic Marnus Schoeman was excellent, winning turnovers but finding tackling hard. Our Man of the Match was that will-o'-the-wisp Willie le Roux. What could you possibly want from a fullback that he does not give?
For the Golden Lions:
Tries: Cronje, Kriel, Volmink 2
Cons: Jantjies, Coetzee, James
Pens: Jantjies 2
For the Griquas:
Tries: Jansen, Boshoff, Barnes, Le Roux, Stemmet
Cons: Brummer 4
Pens: Brummer 3
Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 JR Esterhuizen, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Butch James, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Willie Britz, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Joshua Strauss, 3 CJ Van der Linde, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg (captain).
Replacements: 16 Callie Visagie, 17 Ruan Dreyer, 18 Michael Rhodes, 19 Cobus Grobbelaar, 20 Michael Bondesio, 21 Alwyn Hollenbach, 22 Deon Helberg.
Griquas: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Jannie Boshoff, 13 Jean Stemmet, 12 Walter Venter, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Marnus Hugo, 8 Leon Karemaker, 7 Wesley Wilkins, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Martin Muller, 4 Rynhardt Landman, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Ryno Barnes (captain), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Dobson, 17 Ivann Espag, 18 Frikkie Spies, 19 Justin Downey, 20 Jacques Coetzee, 21 Marnitz Boshoff, 22 Matthew Rosslee.
Referee: Craig Joubert
Assistant referees: Rasta Rasivhenge, Stefan Breytenbach
TMO: Shaun Veldsman