Expect more Currie Cup entertainment from the Golden Lions and the Griquas

27 July 2017 - 16:47 By Khanyiso Tshwaku
Currie Cup during the Toyota Free State Cheetahs Currie Cup season launch at Toyota Stadium on July 19, 2017 in Bloemfontein, South Africa.
Currie Cup during the Toyota Free State Cheetahs Currie Cup season launch at Toyota Stadium on July 19, 2017 in Bloemfontein, South Africa.
Image: Frikkie Kapp/Gallo Images

In hindsight‚ it was a good thing Ruan Combrinck saved the Lions from the Sharks' ambush job.

If that wasn't the case‚ the Sharks would have had to travel to New Zealand and the Currie Cup was going to be the main rugby fare.

Fortunately‚ the Lions will be hosting the Hurricanes‚ meaning the Golden Lions and the Griquas will be the starter for what could be a match of the ages.

Golden Lions v Griquas (Ellis Park‚ 12.30pm)

Both sides were on the receiving end of high-scoring matches where they gave as good as they got before being downed by the Pumas and the Blue Bulls respectively.

While the Currie Cup is quietly bubbling under‚ it got off to an explosive start of which these two sides provided some entertainment.

While the Lions are formidable at home‚ the Griquas hardly respect teams.

Golden Lions team: Jaco van der Walt‚ Madosha Tambwe‚ Jacques Nel‚ Jarryd Sage‚ Anthony Volminck‚ Shaun Reynolds‚ Dillon Smit‚ Ryan Kankowski (captain)‚ Robert Kruger‚ James Venter‚ Marvin Orie‚ Rhyno Herbst‚ Justin Ackerman‚ Pieter Jansen‚ Sti Sithole.

Replacements: Mike Willemse‚ Andrew Beerwinkel‚ Bobby de Wee‚ Hacjivah Dayimani‚ Bradley Thain‚ Aphiwe Dyantyi‚ Stokkies Hannekom.

Griquas: Eric Zana‚ AJ Coertzen (captain)‚ Tertius Kruger‚ Clinton Swart‚ Enver Brandt‚ George Whitehead‚ Christiaan Meyer‚ Jonathan JV Rensburg‚ Sias Koen‚ Wendal Wehr‚ Pieter JV Vuren‚ FP Pelser‚ Ewald van der Westhuizen‚ Marius Fourie‚ Liam Hendricks.

Replacements: AJ Le Roux‚ Devon Martinus‚ Mzwanele Zito‚ RJ Liebenberg‚ Renier Botha‚ Andre Swarts‚ Johnathan Francke.

Sharks v Pumas (Saturday‚ King's Park‚ 5pm)

The Sharks are smarting from a pasting in Bloemfontein and will look to home comforts to earn their first win of the season.

The Pumas though are on a high after their win against the Lions and will prove to be difficult opponents.

Sharks: Garth April‚ Kobus van Wyk‚ Jeremy Ward‚ Lukhanyo Am‚ Sbu Nkosi‚ Curwin Bosch‚ Michael Claassens‚ Daniel du Preez‚ Jean-Luc du Preez‚ Keegan Daniel‚ Ruan Botha (captain)‚ Hyron Andrews‚ Ross Geldenhuys‚ Chiliboy Ralepelle‚ Thomas du Toit.

Replacements: Franco Marais‚ Juan Schoeman‚ Tyler Paul‚ Tera Mtembu‚ Jacques Vermeulen‚ Cameron Wright‚ Inny Radebe.

Pumas: Gerrit Smith‚ Ruwellyn Isbell‚ Jerome Pretorius‚ Hennie Skorbinski (captain)‚ JP Lewis‚ Justin van Staden‚ Stefan Ungerer‚ Carel Greeff‚ Lambert Groenewald‚ Thembelani Bholi‚ Hugo Kloppers‚ Jeremey Jordaan‚ Pieter Scholtz‚ Marko Janse van Rensburg‚ Kwezi Mona.

Replacements: Frank Herne‚ De-Jay Terblanche‚ Jannie Stander‚ Chris Cloete‚ Reynier van Rooyen‚ Sias Ebersohn‚ Devon Williams.

Free State Cheetahs v Western Province (Sunday‚ Free State Stadium‚ 2.30pm)

Western Province will have a tough start to their campaign against the defending champions who consummately dealt with the Sharks at home last week.

Having kept the core of their Super Rugby side‚ the Cheetahs are favourites to win this game.

Free State Cheetahs: Clayton Blommetjies‚ Rosco Specman‚ Francois Venter‚ William Small-Smith‚ Makazole Mapimpi‚ Niel Marais‚ Shaun Venter‚ Neill Jordaan‚ Oupa Mohoje‚ Uzair Cassiem‚ Reniel Hugo‚ Justin Basson‚ Tom Botha‚ Joseph Dweba‚ Charles Marais.

Replacements: Ox Nche‚ Reinach Venter‚ Rynier Bernardo‚ Henco Venter‚ Zee Mkhabela‚ Ryno Benjamin‚ Malcolm Jaer.

DHL Western Province: TBA

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