Substitute flyhalf Fiela Boshoff scored a last-minute penalty as Griquas beat Pumas in their Currie Cup clash in Mbombela on Friday night.
Durban — Substitute flyhalf Fiela Boshoff kicked his way into Griquas folklore when he nailed a last-minute penalty to nudge his team home 45-44 against the Pumas in Mbombela on Friday night.
This was the best game of the entire Currie Cup, with the evenly-match archrivals trading one exhilarating try after another and every time it looked like the Pumas had built a match-winning cushion, Griquas hit back, and then with time up on the clock, the 23-year-old Boshoff embraced the pressure and kicked his team home.
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Griquas appeared to have opened the scoring with a beautiful try by wing Luther Obi following a slick backline movement but the TMO revealed that a slight forward pass had been involved and the try was disallowed.
😬 It was yet another #CarlingCurrieCup thriller in Mpumalanga tonight, where @GriquasRugby scraped through against the @pumasrugbyunion – match report: https://t.co/TmWvUdz3g8@blacklabelsa #ReachForGold #TheChampionWithin pic.twitter.com/BTKfOutJZs
— Carling Currie Cup (@TheCurrieCup) June 10, 2022
The Pumas then scored first via a Tinus de Beer penalty but there was nothing wrong with Griquas’ next foray over the tryline when scrumhalf Stefan Ungerer capitalised on strong momentum in the Pumas 22 to dive over.
De Beer’s second penalty made it 6-7 but they then lost Phumzile Maqondwana to a professional foul near his line and to run salt in the wound, from the resulting penalty the Griquas pack propelled flanker Hanru Sirgel over the line.
The Pumas responded with their best period of play of the opening 30 minutes and capped it with a fine finish in the corner for right wing Tapiwa Mafura. The home team was on fire and after Tinus de Beer had snapped over a drop goal, another lovely build-up saw prop IG Prinsloo over.
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The pre-half-time burst from the Pumas was not over and as the hooter was about to sound, scrumhalf Chriswill September was put clear for an excellent team try and suddenly the score was 30-14.
Griquas needed to retaliate asap after half time and they did just that when a penalty kicked to the corner resulted in replacement scrumhalf Johan Mulder crashing over and Fiela Boshoff kicked the conversion.
A momentum switch was on the cards when Pumas captain Willie Englebrecht was yellow-carded for an armless tackle but Mafura picked up a Griquas kick just inside his half and when he looked up the Griquas defence had parted like the Red Sea and he scampered 50m for an important try.
But the visitors were not about to lie down and die and when wing Munier Hartzenberg scored, they were back in it at 37-18 with a quarter of the match to go.
And the Pumas were under pressure when Griquas centre Rynhardt Jonker slipped through for their fifth try to make a two-point game but in the ultimate coach killer, they fluffed the restart and Pumas wing Jade Stighling gathered the uncaught ball and ran home for the softest of tries.
But Griquas had the final say when Werner Gouws scored two minutes from time and then Boshoff kicked his team to glory.
Pumas 44 — Tries: Tapiwa Mafura (2), IG Prinsloo, Chriswill September, Jade Stiglingh. Penalties: Tinus de Beer (2). Drop Goal: De Beer. Conversions: De Beer (3), Eddie Fouche (2.
Griquas 45 — Tries: Stefan Ungerer, Hanru Sirgel, Johan Mulder, Munier Hartzenberg, Rynhardt Jonker, Werner Gouws. Conversions: George Whitehead (2), Fiela Boshoff (4). Penalty: Boshoff