Sergeal Petersen marked his 50th Currie Cup appearance with a decisive try as Western Province held on to beat the Pumas at Mbombela Stadium and end their seven-game losing streak.
Despite a dramatic finish, where the stadium lights went out in the 79th minute with Province leading by six points, the visitors managed to see out a late onslaught for a 23-17 victory, the Cape side’s first win since the opening round of the season.
Western Province cut the gap on the Pumas to just seven points and dealt a blow to the home side’s playoff hopes.
While fourth-placed Griquas do not play this weekend, their fate is now in their own hands.
Western Province got off to a cracking start, opening up a 12-0 lead in the first 15 minutes through tries from scrumhalf Godlen Masimla and tighthead prop Neethling Fouche.
Neither side consolidated possession from the kick-offs well at all, which contributed to a blow-for-blow contest. However, it was Province that were able to take a 20-10 lead into the break when Sergeal Petersen pounced on a loose ball to mark his landmark Currie Cup game with an important try.
The Pumas came out guns blazing in the second half and piled on the pressure, notably turning the tide in the battle of the two packs and started to dominate the scrums. It was from the set-piece that scrumhalf Chriswill September managed to snipe for a try to cut the deficit to just three points.
However, Tim Swiel held his nerve to punish Pumas for a couple of moments of poor discipline and give Western Province enough of a buffer to see out the win.
Photo: Dirk Kotze/Gallo Images