Province sneak past Lions XV

Grant Hermanus kicked a last-gasp penalty as Western Province beat the Golden Lions XV 27-24 in round four of the Currie Cup qualifiers, while there were also victories for the Pumas, EP Kings and Griquas.

With the final whistle approaching and the teams locked at 24-24, the Lions conceded a scrum penalty and the young WP fullback held his nerve to slot the winning kick.

The hosts scored two unconverted tries, one an opportunistic intercept effort, for an early 10-3 lead. From that point WP controlled territory and possession and a third try by right wing Khanyo Ngcukana put them 17-3 up at the break.

One converted try either way soon after the restart, saw WP lead 24-10, before the Lions mounted a magnificent comeback to draw level. 

Hermanus was yellow-carded after the hosts had received a team warning for repeated infringements and Lions fullback Sylvian Mahuza exploited their numbers advantage to score his second of the night to close the deficit to seven.

With the clock winding down, Lions replacement flyhalf Shaun Reynolds went over for a self-converted effort which looked to have snatch a dramatic draw for the visitors. But Hermanus returned to the field in time to step up to nail the crucial penalty to deny the Lions.

In Wellington, competition front-runners Griquas beat hosts the Boland Cavaliers 30-14 to extend their lead at the top of the log with a fourth straight bonus-point win.

In East London, the Pumas beat the Border Bulldogs 28-3 and the EP Kings recorded their first victory of the tournament with a 31-18 hammering of the Welwitchias in Windhoek.

Western Province  (27) – Tries: Sibahle Maxwane, Mike Willemse (2), Khanyo Ngcukana. Conversions: Grant Hermanus (2). Penalties: Hermanus.
Golden Lions XV (24) – Tries: Sylvian Mahuza (2), Shaun Reynolds. Conversions: Marnitz Boshoff, Reynolds (2). Penalty: Boshoff.

Boland Cavaliers (14) – Tries: William van Wyk, Christopher Bosch. Conversion: Adriaan Carelse (2).
Griquas (30) – Tries: AJ Coertzen, Alshaun Bock, Jason-Collin Fraser, Marius Fourie. Conversions: Clinton Swart, Ntabeni Dukisa. Penalties: Swart (2).

Border Bulldogs (3) – Penalty: Oliver Zono.
Pumas (28) – Tries: Hennie Skorbinski, Marcello Sampson, Tyler Fisher. Conversions: Justin van Staden (2). Penalties: Van Staden (3).

Welwitchias (18) – Tries: Johann Tromp (2). Conversion: Shaun Kaizemi. Penalties: Kaizemi (2).
EP Kings (31) – Tries: Athi Mayinje, Courtney Winnaar, Siphu Msutwana, Somila Jho, Stephanus Nieuwoudt. Conversions: Mayinje (2), Simon Bolze.

Photo: Petri Oeschger/Gallo Images

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