Griquas are still rooted at the bottom of the log on 16 points
Log leaders, the Sharks, and the Golden Lions continued their winning ways in the Currie Cup Premier Division this weekend as Western Province stumbled against the Pumas in a thrilling weekend of action.
The Sharks extended their lead at the top of the log table to a comfortable 14 points as they registered their eighth successive victory by defeating the Tafel Lager Griquas 40-22 in Kimberley on Friday.
The hosts struck first with a try in the third minute, but the log leaders hit back with three tries to take a 19-7 lead at the break. They built on this in the second half to increase their try tally to six – with centres Marius Louw and Jeremy Ward each scoring a brace. Griquas, in turn, were only able to add two tries to their tally, which saw them suffer their fifth defeat in a row.
With this defeat Griquas are still rooted at the bottom of the log on 16 points, four points adrift of the Blue Bulls who have 20 points to their tally.
Although Griquas did show some improvement in the match, especially in the way they started the first half, they were still well and truly hammered by a more hungry outfit.
Once again, speaking to supporters and former Griqua players, the consensus seems to be that the hosts lacked urgency at the breakdowns and commitment in the line-outs and scrums. They were also accused of showing little or no flair in their game plan.
However, one cannot overlook the fact that they scored three well-worked tries.
It must be said that when analysing the similarities between the Rugby Championship slaughter between the All Blacks and Springboks and the Sharks versus Griqua game, in both cases the losing sides did not show enough commitment and made similar basic errors on attack and in defence.
A disappointed Griqua conditioning coach Neil Murphy lamented the errors that the hosts keep making.
“After a great start and much improvement in the set-pieces we felt we could hold our own against the Sharks in the first half. However, silly errors from us allowed the Sharks to go ahead 19-7 at half-time.
“The second half was exciting with some great tries, but once again some silly errors allowed the Sharks to keep building the scoreboard (lead) after half-time.
“But also to be fair, the Sharks were more clinical by taking full advantage of our mistakes,” Murphy added.
The coach said that there was not a chance that Griquas would throw in the towel.
“It is very frustrating to be without any points from the game as the attitude and character of the players was evident right until the end.
“We have three games to go, while rugby is an odd ball shape game, I believe the ball has turned for us and we are going to go all out to get three wins from our final fixtures,” the coach added.
Pumas 22-12 Western Province
Lions 36-33 Blue Bulls