May 8, 2013 in Uncategorized
The Vodacom Cup has reached the business end of the competition with the Golden Lions taking on WP in Johannesburg and the Pumas playing the EP Kings in Nelspruit. For the Lions the opportunity to play “match play” games benefits their preparations for the Wooden Spoon knock outs at the end of July but to get full value they need to progress to the final and win that too.
Saturday, May 11 2013
Golden Lions vs WP – Ellis Park, Johannesburg: 14:15
Although not anywhere near their potential Super Rugby team the Lions will field a very experienced match 22 against a very young WP side. Last week’s match 22 for WP had an average age is 22.50 with only seven of their players over 22 with just over 373 senior caps and seven Super Rugby caps to their credit compared to a Lions team averaging 24 years and with nearly 850 senior caps, of which 140+ are for Super Rugby.
Add to this that WP have lost their striker Cheslin Kolbe to the Baby Boks, had to replace an injured Rohan Kitshoff with Helmut Lehmann and are playing Tim Swiel at fullback, much to the disgust of some Swiel fans.
But in this apparent mismatch lies the danger. If the Lions aren’t careful and if they go into this game overconfident of success these youngsters could very well upset the apple cart. The Golden Lions team should have just too much talent and experience for this WP team but they need to take the game seriously and go out to win convincingly.
WP has scraped through a number of close matches during the round robin stages as well as in the quarter final against Griquas and can tough it out, if the Lions think they can play festival rugby on the day they could live to regret it. We saw last week how quickly a comfortable lead can disappear and the game be lost when the EP Kings beat the Blue Bulls after being 13-31 behind.
LIONS to beat Western Province by 20
Golden Lions: 15 Chryzander Botha, 14 Deon Helberg, 13 Deon van Rensburg, 12 Alwyn Hollenbach, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Michael Bondesio, 8 Warren Whiteley (c), 7 Warwick Tecklenburg, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Hugo Kloppers, 4 Hendrik Roodt, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Ruan Dreyer.
Reserves: 16 Francois du Toit, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 JJ Breet, 19 Willie Britz, 20 Ross Cronjé, 21 Dylan des Fountain, 22 Lionel Cronjé.
15. Tim Swiel, 14. Pat Howard, 13. Berton Klaasen, 12. Mike van der Spuy, 11. Devon Williams, 10. Kurt Coleman, 9. Bolla Conradie (captain), 8. Rayn Smid, 7. Graham Knoop, 6. Helmut Lehmann, 5. Wilhelm van der Sluys, 4. Gerbrandt Grobler (vice-captain), 3. Chris Heiberg, 2. Stephan Coetzee, 1. Ashley Wells
Reserves: 16. Jody Reyneke, 17. Tjoppie Ferreira, 18. Taz Fuzani, 19. Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 20. Godlen Masimla, 21. Kobus van Wyk, 22. Dillyn Leyds
Pumas vs EP Kings – Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit: 16:30
The Pumas remains one of the better sides of the smaller unions and they have the advantage that they play at full strength as they do not lose players to a Super Rugby team. The EP Kings, on the other hand, had to release a number of players to the Southern Kings, some due to injuries of key players, other due to rotation. It is puzzling, however, that the fit players released from the Southern Kings wasn’t taken up in the EP Kings team and that most of the replacements were a number of 19, 20 and 21 year olds. As it is the rather young and inexperienced EP Kings side stand little chance against a Pumas side full of “hardebaard” experience.
Could it be that the EP Kings would rather not face the Lions in a final and lose in PE, as would be the case if they both win? A loss in PE against the Lions might send a negative message to both their supporters and their players and they would rather not risk that?
PUMAS to beat Eastern Province Kings by 9
Pumas: 15 Coenie van Wyk, 14 JW Bell, 13 Wilmaure Louw, 12 Stefan Watermeyer, 11 Rosko Speckman, 10 Carl Bezuidenhout, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Renaldo Bothma, 7 Jaco Bouwer, 6 Corné Steenkamp (c), 5 Eduan van der Walt, 4 Uzair Cassiem, 3 Ivann Espag, 2 Frank Herne, 1 Vincent Koch.
16 Jacques Momberg, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Dee-Jay Terblanche, 19 Marius Coetzer, 20 RW Kember, 21 Jerome Pretorius, 22 Dewald Pretorius
Kings: 15 Kayle van Zyl, 14 Michael Killian, 13 Wayne Stevens, 12 Tiger Mangweni, 11 Brian Skosana, 10 Wesley Dunlop, 9 Scott Mathie, 8 Paul Schoeman, 7 Mpho Mbioyzo (c), 6 Tomas Leonardi, 5 Darron Nell, 4 Stefan Willemse, 3 KP du Plessis, 2 Boetie Britz, 1 Lizo Gqoboka.
Replacements: 16 Dane van der Westhuyzen, 17 Brendan Olivier, 18 Samora Fihlani, 19 Dalton Davis, 20 Dwayne Kelly, 21 Marlou van Niekerk, 22 Lonwabo Ntleki.