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SA Cup frontrunners face a test of character

ROUND FIVE PREVIEW: The three teams at the top of the SA Cup log – Griquas, the Pumas and Cheetahs – will have their credentials as frontrunners tested when they hit the road for tricky away fixtures this weekend in Round Five of the competition.

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Griquas, currently at the top of the standings, will have a difficult encounter when they travel to the Western Cape for a Saturday afternoon clash with the Boland in Wellington.

Three more games are scheduled for Saturday and all, including the one in Wellington, will start at 15.00 (local time). The second-placed Pumas are away to bottom-placed Border Bulldogs in East London; the Leopards welcome Eastern Province to Potchefstroom; and the Falcons entertain the SWD Eagles in Kempton Park.

Sunday afternoon’s Free State derby in Welkom between the fourth-placed hosts, the Griffons, and the visiting Cheetahs, currently in third on the log, wraps up the round.

Griquas have been in impressive form to date which has seen them securing bonus-point wins in each of their four games for a tally of 20 league points. The men from Kimberley sit top of the league table because of a better points difference than the Pumas, who have the same number of wins and points.

Pieter Bergh’s team will however come up against Hawies Fourie’s resurgent Boland team, who have now won their previous two games after a slow start. The Wellington fixture will see an interesting duel between the two flyhalves – Garth April of Boland and Griquas counterpart George Whitehead, who is the current leading points scorer with 78 points.

Another exciting tussle is predicted in Potchefstroom, where hosts Leopards will aim to follow up their first win of the season last week against Border, when they welcome EP to Olën Park.

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Like the Leopards, EP also have only one success to date, however, the Eastern Cape side gave encouraging performances in their defeats to suggest their hosts will not have it their own way on Saturday.

The Pumas should have too much firepower for Border, who have lost all four previous games, but it’s never easy in East London and the men from Mpumalanga will be mindful of underestimating their opponents when they run out at Police Park on Saturday.

The focus moves to Welkom on Sunday when provincial neighbours, the Griffons and Cheetahs, will contest a Free State derby. Both teams sit at mid-table on 15 points from three wins out of four.

The hosts will fancy their chances against their youthful-looking opponents from Bloemfontein. Griffons midfielder Domenic Smit is currently the leading try-scorer in the competition with seven five-pointers, two more than the Pumas duo of Darnell Osuagwu and Llewellyn Classen.

SA Cup Round Five fixtures:

Saturday, April 20:

Boland v Griquas

Teams:

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Boland team v Griquas 2024

SA Cup frontrunners face a test of character

 

Venue: Boland Stadium, Wellington
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 GMT)
Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen

Leopards vs Eastern Province

Venue: Olën Park, Potchefstroom
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 GMT)
Referee: Paul Mente

Falcons v SWD Eagles

Venue: Barnard Stadium, Kempton Park
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 GMT)
Referee: Griffin Colby

Border Bulldogs v Pumas

Teams:

Pumas team v Border 2024

Venue: Police Park, East London
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00 GMT)
Referee: Sean Muller

Sunday, April 21:

Griffons v Cheetahs

Teams:

Griffons team v Cheetahs 2024

Venue: Griffons Rugby Stadium, Welkom
Kick-off: 15.00 (13.00)
Referee: Christopher Allison

 

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