Bloemfontein - Western Province remain the front runners in this year's Currie Cup
competition after beating the Free State Cheetahs 34-29 in the side's
encounter at the Free State stadium in Bloemfontein on Saturday
Having lost only a single game this season, Province
scored a try in the final minute via winger Kobus van Wyk to seal the
result and put them in the pound seats for the coming semi-finals and
The Cheetahs, still in search of a semi-final
birth, started well by putting Western Province under good pressure,
especially from the driving maul.
Province started to build some
rhythm of their own on the attack, but it was the Cheetahs who looked
the better early on with flyhalf Willie du Plessis running straight
through and converting his own try in the 13th minute to give the hosts
the early lead.
The visitors responded with a try as Springbok
centre Juan de Jongh thanks to some fancy footwork. Province flyhalf
Demetri Catrakilis added the extras two points to draw the scores level.
the Cheetahs were on the war path, with centre Joubert Engelbrecht
rewarded with a five pointer in the 24th minute which Du Plessis
converted after some good pressure by the hosts.
A penalty within
striking distance allowed Catrakilis to reduce the deficit to just four
points and they took the lead shortly after as hooker Scarra Ntubeni
rounded off some good attacking play with a try right next to the
Catrakilis converted to give the visitors a lead of three points.
Province enjoyed an even bigger lead at half-time as De Jongh recovered
a cross kick from Catrakilis after the hooter sounded, and converted to
make the score 24-14 in favour of the visitors.
The Cheetahs got
some valuable momentum shortly after the restart as eighth man Lappies
Labuschagne ran around the Province defenders for a try.
Labuschagne got a gap as the visitors were short one player after De Jongh was sin binned.
Du Plessis missed with the conversion and the five point deficit was increased by Catrakilis with penalty kick.
Cheetahs, however, tried everything in their power to reduce Province's
lead and it paid dividends as centre Francois Venter scored for the
hosts in the 59th minute.
Du Plessis kicked the conversion, leaving the Cheetahs just one point adrift.
pressure by the Cheetahs led to a penalty within striking distance that
Du Plessis slotted to give his side the lead by a mere two points with
five minutes to play.
But Province sealed the game with a try by
winger Kobus van Wyk under the uprights and replacement Kurt Coleman
kicked the conversion to put the result beyond doubt.
Western Province 34 (24): Tries: Juan de Jongh (2), Scarra
Ntubeni, Kobus van Wyk. Conversions: Demetri Catrakilis (3), Kurt
Coleman. Penalties: Demitri Catrakilis (2).
Free State Cheetahs
29 (14): Tries: Willie du Plessis, Joubert Engelbrecht, Lappies
Labuschagne, Francois Venter. Conversions: Willie du Plessis (3).
Penalties: Willie du Plessis.Teams:
Free State Cheetahs
15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 JP Du Plessis,13 Francois Venter,12 Joubert Engelbrecht,11 Raymond Rhule,10 Willie du Plessis,9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Lappies Labuschagné,7 Neil Claassen,6 Tienie Burger,5 Francois Uys,4 Werner Lourens,3 George Marich,2 Torsten Van Jaarsveld (captain),1 Coenie Oosthuizen
Substitutes:16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen,19 Henco Venter,19 Vincent Jobo,20 Shaun Venter,21 Pieter-Steyn de Wet, 22 AJ Coertzen
15 Dillyn Leyds, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Juan de Jongh (captain), 12 Jaco Taute, 11 Pat Howard, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Michael Rhodes, 6 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 5 Manuel Carizza, 4 Rynhardt Elstadt, 3 Pat Cilliers, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Alistair Vermaak
Substitutes: 16. Neil Rautenbach, 17. Brok Harris, 18. Oli Kebble, 19. Jurie van Vuuren, 20. Louis Schreuder, 21. Kurt Coleman, 22. Michael van der Spuy