Griquas sink Boland in qualifier
The visiting GWK Griquas strong-armed the Regent Boland Cavaliers 21-3 (halftime 8-0) in a tough Absa Currie Cup Qualifier at a stormy Boland Stadium in Wellington on Saturday afternoon.
The two teams had contrasting fortunes in the opening round of qualifiers, with the visitors riding high after thrashing the Border Bulldogs 52-5.
The hosts had suffered heartbreak when they went down 27-25 to the Down Touch Griffons and were looking for a vital victory to keep them in the hunt for Currie Cup qualification.
Two early yellow were shown to Hilton Lobberts and Jonathan Francke and this could have proved disastrous for the Griquas. Both players coincidentally had represented Boland earlier in their careers and had no trouble finding their way to the naughty chairs set out.
Fullback Gouws Prinsloo scored a try despite his team resembling a rugby league side at that stage. Prinsloo couldn’t add the extras but made up with a penalty on the stroke of halftime, making it 8-0 at the interval.
A penalty by Eric Zana finally got the Cavaliers on the board after 47 minutes, with Prinsloo having kicked a penalty a few minutes earlier.
The more physical Griquas made it a tough afternoon for the Bolanders and Lobberts added a second try. Flyhalf Francois Brummer missed the conversion and Griqaus' lead was 16-3 going into the final quarter of the match.
Zana missed a penalty attempt thereafter and it was Griquas who had the final say as big centre Howard Mnisi, on as a replacement, scored with the match virtually over. Replacement Marais Schmidt continued the kicking trend of the afternoon and also missed with his conversion attempt.
The Griquas will look to cement their place at the top of the log when they next face the only other unbeaten team in Leopards in a top of the table clash.
The Boland Cavaliers travel to East London to play the Border Bulldogs and must come back with the maximum haul if they are to remain in contention for qualification.
Griquas 21 (8): Tries: Gouws Prinsloo, Hilton Lobberts, Howard Mnisi. Penalties: Gouws Prinsloo (2).
Boland Cavaliers 3 (0): Penalty: Eric Zana.