Saturday’s game in Durban should be labelled a grudge match for Griquas after they came out second-best against the self same Sharks in the season opener.
TAFEL Lager Griquas are under no illusion about the strengths of the Cell C Sharks whom they will play against on Saturday in Durban in the Carling Currie Cup and are preparing accordingly.
Head coach Scott Mathie spoke to the DFA ahead of Saturday’s game, saying that they knew where they needed to step up. “We have to match them at set pieces. They are a very strong side that likes to maul.”
Mathie has consistently identified the Kimberley side’s handling of set-pieces as among some of the worrying aspects of the Griqua game.
Under his guardianship this season Griquas have done more to rekindle the kind of high excitement levels among fans that has not been evident in quite a number of years.
The “Peacock Blues” have, with a strong dose of the Mathie touch, briefly flirted with the top spot on the Currie Cup log before easing into third spot. And now they prepare to do duty at the Shark Tank this weekend.
From the looks of it Griquas are playing fearlessly this season. They took giants in their stride on the way up the rankings. The first Griquas casualty this season and likely one of the biggest wins ever in the hundred plus years plus of the team was taking down the much fancied Western Province team 30-28 about a month ago.
The next game against the Sigma Lions proved that Griquas stuck to the winning script when they came away 31-41 bonus point victors. The log position at that point showed Griquas running atop of the pile, a sight rarely witnessed in SA rugby history.
Sitting out a cancelled match later on owing to “commitments by the Springboks” and civil upheaval elsewhere in the country have done nothing to slow down Griquas’ momentum in the series, and Saturday’s game in Durban should be labelled a grudge match for Griquas. They came out second-best against the self same Sharks in the season opener, losing 30-16 at their Tafel Lager home base.
This week Mathie confirmed that he was awaiting confirmation from the team medics regarding the condition of a few of his players before he signs off on the team line-up.
“There might be one or two (changes) in the team line-up,” Mathie told the DFA. “One expects that players will pick up minor injuries from a game. We will know for certain on Thursday,” he added.
Meanwhile, the press was awash with news this week about the departure from Griquas of utility back Eduan Keyter who was named as one of three players who were signed on by the Sharks.
Keyter was instrumental in the Griquas last win against the Lions having scored a whopping four tries in that game and is the current lead try-scorer in the conference.
Saturday’s match kicks off at 2.30pm.
— Griquas Rugby (@GriquasRugby) July 29, 2021