Cape Town - The Valke produced fine running rugby to score nine tries while thrashing the EP Kings 59-26 (halftime 26-14) in their provincial tournament rugby fixture at Barnard Stadium, Kempton Park, on Friday.
Having finished the tournament outside of the promotion spots, the Valke will now play in the First Division but will take heart from another consummate performance after victory over the Cell C Sharks XV in their previous match.
By contrast, the Kings completed a miserable campaign with their 12th defeat in 14 games. They will, nonetheless, play in the nine-team Currie Cup Premier Division by virtue of the Southern Kings’ Super Rugby status. This, after finishing a lowly 13th in the qualifying stakes.
The Valke were quick to stamp their authority on the match with two tries in the first 15 minutes through centre Grant Jenke and left wing Etienne Taljaard. Flyhalf Warren Potgieter kicked one of the conversions for the Valke to lead 12-0.
The Kings got off the mark when right wing Keanu Vers scored after 18 minutes for flyhalf Simon Bolze to convert.
But the Valke then secured the bonus point with another double strike in the form of lock Shane Kirkwood and prop Andries Schutte. Potgieter added the two conversions with the boot.
The Kings bounced back on the stroke of halftime when prop David Murray forced his way over for Bolze to convert.
They were at it again after the restart and narrowed the gap to 26-21 with a Lusanda Badiyana try and Bolze conversion.
That will have lifted their spirits and given them renewed hope but two quick tries by scrumhalf Johan Pretorius saw the Valke streak ahead again.
Scrumhalf Franswa Ueckermann scored the bonus point try for the Kings and Bolze slotted the conversion.
But Janke and Taljaard each got in for their second tries and Aspeling managed the final score of the afternoon. Aspeling also slotted all three conversions to finish with 13 points in the game.
Valke – Tries: Andries Schutte, Etienne Taljaard (2), Grant Janke (2), Johan Pretorius (2), Karlo Aspeling, Shane Kirkwood; Conversions: Karlo Aspeling (4), Warren Potgieter (3)
EP Kings – Tries: David Murray, Franswa Ueckermann, Keanu Vers, Lusanda Badiyana; Conversions: Simon Bolze (3)