Griquas halt Leopards’ charge

Griquas scored an impressive 48-21 win over the Leopards in Potchefstroom, while the Valke beat SWD and Border upset Boland in round three of the 2015 Currie Cup qualifiers.

Right wing Riaan Viljoen scored two of Griquas' eight tries at Olen Park, while the hosts only went over for three converted tries. In a dominating first-half display, the visitors ran in six touchdowns, including Viljoen's brace, to open up a commanding 36-7 lead at the break. Fullback Rhyno Smith's converted try accounted for the Leopards' seven points.

The second stanza was more evenly contested with both sides dotting down twice in the final quarter, but Griquas' first-half burst was enough to inflict defeat on the Leopards and move above them to the top of the qualifier log.

Meanwhile, the Border Bulldogs surprised the Boland Kavaliers with a 22-15 victory in Wellington. The hosts led from the 14th minute with a penalty from flyhalf Eric Zana, but a converted try and a penalty from Masixole Banda in the final 10 minutes of the half, gave Border a 10-3 advantage at the interval.

That lead was extended to 22-10 after scrumhalf Ntando Kebe and Banda scored further tries, with the latter adding one conversion. The hosts managed to reply with two tries through Adriaan Carelse and Chaney Willemse, but their cause wasn't helped by Zana, who missed four penalty attempts at goal. The victory sees Border maintain their 100% record in the qualifying competition with two from two wins. 

And in Kempton Park, right wing Coert Cronjé scored a late try to hand the Valke a narrow 22-17 home victory over the SWD Eagles. The Valke were 10-0 ahead after the 30 minutes, but three scores against the run of play put SWD in the ascendancy at 17-10. 

Strong defending then saw the Eagles withstand an attack on their line, but the pressure eventually told after replacement flank Andisa Ntsila was yellow-carded for repeated infringements. Valke flyhalf Jaco Oosthuizen crossed for a converted try to draw level, before Cronjé's heroics subjected SWD to a third straight defeat.

Leopards (21) – Tries: Rhyno Smith, Damian Engeldoe, Loftus Morrison. Conversions: Adriaan Engelbrecht (3).
Griquas (48) – Tries: Riaan Viljoen (2), Jonathan Francke, Carel Greef, Hilton Lobberts, Clinton Swart, Francois Brummer, RJ Liebenberg. Conversions: Gouws Prinsloo (4).

Boland Kavaliers (15) – Tries: Adriaan Carelse, Chaney Willemse. Conversion: Christian Rust. Penalty: Eric Zana.
Border Bulldogs (22) – Tries: Masixole Banda (2), Ntando Kebe. Conversions: Banda (2). Penalty: Banda.

Valke (22) – Tries: Friedl Olivier, Jaco Oosthuizen, Coert Cronjé. Conversions: Juan Kotzé (2). Penalty Kotzé.
SWD Eagles (17) – Tries: Wayne Khan, Christo du Plessis, Gerrit Smith. Conversion: Elric van Vuuren.

Photo: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images

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Mariette Adams