Sharks manage shaky win in Welkom to go top of the log
MATCH REPORT: The Sharks managed to grind out a 35-9 win in the Currie Cup against the Griffons in Welkom on Friday but not before they were severely tested in the first half.
The Griffons came out blazing, taking the early lead through two penalty kicks in succession, not showing the highly rated Sharks any respect and asking a lot of questions of the Sharks in the first half and were playing all the rugby.
The Sharks persisted with a kicking game which clearly was not paying any dividends as they were handing the ball to the resilient Griffons who used the possession gifted them and turning it in attack.
The men from Griffons made no mistakes and were very accurate in their execution.
Sharks coach Joey Mongalo must have given one heck of a speech at half-time, as it was a very different side to take the field for the second half.
They were straight into the action from the kick-off, and it was quickly evident that they will attack with ball in hand.
Within the first minute Yaw Penxe was over the line for his tenth Currie Cup try and barely four minutes later Celimpilo Gumede got over the line.
Two Sharks were overturned after TMO decisions which could have stretched their lead even further, But not deterred, and spurred on by an excellent performance in the line-out by captain Reniel Hugo, two more tries followed.
There were a few stars in the Griffons side, and none more so than fullback Duan Pretorius, Doctor Booysen and Hendrik van Schoor.
And a minute before the final whistle Nevaldo Fleurs rubbed further salt into the Griffons wounds to score the visitors’ fifth try.
For the Sharks Penxe continued with his sterling performance he has showcased during this Currie Cup season while Dylan Richardson put in man of the math performance, taking the lead getting over the advantage line.
For the moment the Sharks are at the top of the Currie Cup log, with the rest of the matches still to come.
For the Griffons:
Pens: Juries 3
For the Sharks:
Tries: Cronje, Penxe, Gumede, Mchunu, Nevaldo
Cons: Cronje 5
Griffons: 15 Juan Pretorius, 14 Domenic Smit, 13 Carel-Jan Coetzee, 12 Jandre de Beer, 11 Randy Fielies, 10 Robbie Petzer, 9 Jaywinn Juries, 8 Sokuphumla Xakalashe, 7 Thomas Ongera, 6 Mitchell Carstens, 5 Michael Benadie, 4 Rian Olivier, 3 Doctor Booysen, 2 Hendrik van Schoor, 1 Xolani Jacobs.
Replacements – from: 16 Dandre Delport, 17 Stephan de Jager, 18 Buhle Nojekwa, 19 Wikus Nieuwenhuis, 20 Curtly Thomas, 21 Thato Mavundla, 22 Keanu Vers, 23 Duren Hoffman, 24 Jared Kruger, 25 Jaco Willemse, 26 Richman Gora, 27 Jamba Ulengo, 28 Ethan Williams, 29 Marquit September, 30 Bennie Human.
Sharks: 15 Nevaldo Fleurs, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Murray Koster, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Marnus Potgieter, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Bradley Davids, 8 Celimpilo Gumede, 7 James Venter, 6 Dylan Richardson, 5 Reniel Hugo (captain), 4 Ockie Barnard, 3 Ntuthukho Mchunu, 2 Dameon Venter, 1 Dian Bleuler.
Replacements: 16 Fezokuhle Mbatha, 17 Ntuthuko Mchunu, 18 Hanro Jacobs, 19 Marco de Witt, 20 Vincent Tshituka, 21 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 22 Tiaan Fourie, 23 Aphelele Fassi.
Referee: Christopher Allison
Assistant Referees: Local
TMO: Ben Crouse