Pretoria - Defending champions, the Sharks
eased their way to a comfortable 39-27 Absa Currie Cup victory over the
Blue Bulls in Pretoria on Saturday.
Tries from Sibusiso Sithole,
Craig Burden and Lwazi Mvovo, as well as 15 points from the boot of
French flyhalf Frederic Michalak, ensured the men from Durban led from
start to finish at Loftus Versfeld, racing into a 16-0 lead early in the
The home side fought back briefly at the end of each
half with Bjorn Basson collecting two tries along the way, but it could
not prevent John Plumtree’s side from completing a double for the 2011
season - the Durban side won the first round 35-16.
were in charge from the outset with Meyer Bosman putting them in front
in the sixth minute via a monstrous penalty from inside his own half
after the Bulls were punished for being offside.
He followed that
up with two further long-range kicks - the first when Werner Kruger was
called for collapsing the scrum and the second for foul play - to lead
9-0 after 11 minutes.
A sixth penalty conceded by the home side gave Bosman yet another chance, although this one faded narrowly away to the right.
the visitors kept the scoreboard ticking over, this time via the
opening try, scored by Sithole after good work by Stefan Terblanche,
Keegan Daniel and Charl McLeod in the build-up.
comfortably converted before the Bulls finally managed to find some
rhythm with some strong phase play leading to Warwick Tecklenburg
driving his way over.
The conversion was good by Louis Fouche,
who missed a straightforward penalty early on, before Basson found space
and dashed from his own 22 to run in only his second try of the season.
missed the conversion, but made amends moments later by landing his
second kick when Jean Deysel was called for tackling off his feet,
cutting the gap to a single point.
A sharp burst of pace from
Burden then helped the hooker power his way over as the Sharks again
extended their lead via another converted try to lead 23-15 at half
Fouche missed successive penalties to start the second
half, with Michalak making no mistake with the three presented to him - Akona Ndungane, Rossouw de Klerk and Flip van der Merwe faltering for
their side - as the lead was stretched to 17 with less than a quarter of
the game to play.
And with time running out Bosman effected a turnover in midfield and sent Mvovo flying down the left for an easy try.
CJ Stander and Basson then added late tries to help snatch a consolation bonus point, but it came too late for anything more.
Blue Bulls: Tries: Warwick Tecklenburg, Bjorn Basson (2), CJ Stander.
Conversions: Louis Fouche, Francois Brummer. Penalties: Fouche
Tries: Sibusiso Sithole, Craig Burden, Lwazi Mvovo. Conversions:
Frederic Michalak (3). Penalties: Meyer Bosman (3), Michalak (3)