Currie Cup

Leopards look to close gap

2014-07-03 15:37
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Johannesburg - The Leopards return to action this week in the Currie Cup qualifying competition and will be aiming to close the gap on log leaders Griquas on Saturday when they face the Griffons in Potchefstroom.

Griquas increased their lead on the standings to six points after beating the Griffons last weekend.

However, the Griquas were in action on Wednesday, in a friendly against the Pumas in Kimberley, and would only resume their quest for qualification next weekend.

It gives the Leopards an ideal opportunity to come within touching distance of Griquas.

With a dangerous backline, spearheaded by captain and former Springbok flyhalf Andre Pretorius, were in second place while Griffons were lying joint fourth with the Boland Cavaliers.

The Leopards also had two former Junior Springboks speedsters in Sylvian Mahuza and Luther Obi, while Hoffman Maritz, always a threat, would wear the number 15 jersey.

The Griffons, had a good record in Potch and their defeat last year was the first in five years where they did not emerge as winners from an encounter.

The Border Bulldogs and SWD Eagles would start the weekend's action on Friday evening in East London.

Bottom of the log Border made a flying start last weekend against the Valke but could not maintain the intensity in the second half, resulting in a 54-40 loss after leading 26-12 at half-time.

Wings Thembani Mkokeli and Lindani Ndelela scored three tries against the Valke and, while the Eagles would be hoping to strike with their own backline, they would have to keep a close eye on the visitors' fast outside backs.

The Valke and Boland clash in the early match on Saturday in Kempton Park where fullback Juan Kotze would be hoping to help steer the Valke to their third win in the qualifiers.

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Fixtures
01 July 2016
Cell C Sharks XV v Leopards, Durban 16:45
Blue Bulls v Boland Cavaliers, Pretoria 19:00
02 July 2016
Free State XV v Hino Valke, Bloemfontein 12:15
Xerox Golden Lions v Griffons, Johannesburg 14:10
Western Province v SWD Eagles, Cape Town 16:00
Windhoek Draught Welwitschias v Border Bulldogs, Windhoek 16:00
EP Kings v Griquas, Port Elizabeth 16:00
07 July 2016
Griquas v Pumas, Kimberley 19:00
08 July 2016
SWD Eagles v Free State XV, George 19:00
09 July 2016
Hino Valke v Xerox Golden Lions, Kempton Park 15:00
Border Bulldogs v Blue Bulls, East London 15:00
Leopards v EP Kings, Potchefstroom 15:00
Boland Cavaliers v Western Province, Piketberg 16:00
15 July 2016
Blue Bulls v Windhoek Draught Welwitschias, Pretoria 13:00
Cell C Sharks XV v Hino Valke, Durban 16:15
EP Kings v Griffons, Port Elizabeth 18:00
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