Sharks hammer poor Griquas
August 21, 2009
Waylon Murray bagged an intercept try for the Sharks © Getty Images
A ruthless performance from the Sharks ended the Griquas' stay at the top of the Currie Cup table, the reigning champions swatting aside the men from Kimberley 41-6 at Kings Park.
With the Bulls having ended the Griquas' unbeaten run last weekend, the Sharks heaped further woe on them with a bonus-point thrashing that will see hopes of a title defence reinforced for Durban fans.
Waylon Murray's intercept score had given the Sharks the lead, but two penalties from fly-half Naas Olivier kept Griquas in touch.
Charl McLeod extended the home side's lead with a simple score, and they never looked back.
Monty Dumond scored the third after a flowing move, finishing the game with a 21-point haul, while Lwazi Mvovo and Keegan Daniel rounded off the scoring and sealed the vital try bonus-point.
Western Province kept up their push for a semi-final place with a hard-fought 25-20 win over Golden Lions at Newlands on Saturday.
Victory sent Province in to second in the table after the Griquas' loss, with tries from skipper Luke Watson, fullback Joe Pietersen and Duane Vermuelen proving enough to see off a dogged Lions effort.
Pietersen also landed two penalties and two conversions, but his try was a high point as he handed off two defenders to score in the corner.
The Lions registered their points through a try from feisty scrum-half Janno Vermaak, set up by a bustling break from American Todd Clever, and five penalties from fly-half Herkie Kruger.
Springbok wing Jongi Nokwe ran riot in Bloemfontein on Saturday, notching four tries for Free State Cheetahs in a comprehensive 59-8 win over Boland at Free State Stadium.
The home side raced to a bonus-point inside the first-half and comfortably recorded their third win of the tournament after a terrible winless start. Nokwe was joined on the score-sheet by fullback Hennie Daniller, who bagged a brace, prop Wian du Preez and fly-half Jacques-Louis Potgieter.
Boland registered their only try through Cornal Hendricks and did little to help themselves in terms of discipline, with hooker Clement Lewis and replacement back-row Frikkie Spies both spending time in the sin-bin.
The Blue Bulls kicked off the latest round of Currie Cup action with a 44-11 bonus point victory over the Leopards at Loftus Versfeld on Friday night. The hosts ran in a total of six tries with Jaco Pretorius, Deon Stegmann, Flip van der Merwe, Francois Hougaard, Gerhard van den Heever and Dewald Potgieter all touching down.
Fly-half Burton Francis weighed in with a personal tally of 14 points thanks to four conversions, a drop goal and a penalty. Danie James dotted down for the visitors' only try with Cecil Dumond and Clayton Durand also slotting a penalty apiece.
Tries from Pretorius and Stegmann put the Blue Bulls in control but Dames pulled one back before they headed for the tunnel. Van der Merwe was the next to cross early in the second period before prop Barend van der Walt collected the first of his two yellow cards for continually infringements at the ruck.
Hougaard hammered home the Bulls' advantage with their fourth try and the Leopards then began to spiral out of control. Van den Heever claimed the Bulls' fifth try but his side's celebrations were tempered after by a broken leg for winger Akona Ndungane and a yellow card for loose-head Dean Greyling.
Leopards flank Thabo Mamojele, Van der Walt and No.8 RW Kember also felt the wrath of referee Stuart Berry before the end of the game with the latter seeing red for a late shoulder charge on Hougaard. Bulls captain Potgieter grabbed his side's last score that helped lift them into second place in the table ahead of the remaining matches this weekend.
Ireland coach Joe Schmidt won the tactical battle and set his team on course for a shot at the Grand Slam. Tom Hamilton reports from Dublin
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