With the South Africa vs France series done and dusted, the South African franchise players headed home for Super Rugby duty like the criminals in Ocean’s Eleven after standing at the fountain.
Sharks v Bulls
The Sharks were the obvious favourites to win, not only because they were playing at home, but because they were playing against a struggling Bulls side. The Bulls had nothing to lose and in fact actually nothing to gain either, but they were boosted by the return of Boks who found some great form while they were in the green and gold.
The Sharks team, however, found the form that saw them draw against the Rebels. When a brilliant break from Garth April resulted in an easy try for Gelant, you just felt that it wasn’t going to be the Sharks’ night.
The bulls gave the ball air and even Village of the Damned Schoeman had a good game. Gelant landed a hat trick and the Bulls won quite easily 17 – 30.
Headaches, again,for Coach du Preez and the rest of the fish in the think tank.
Jaguares v Kings
The gwgarawares are a strange species, its nature is completely dependent on which shirt it wears. A puma just seems to be a jaguar with more pride.
The Argentinian team, packed with international experience, just seems to turn to shit in their kwrgraweres shirts. Nicholas Sanchez is probably one of the more accurate kickers in world rugby, but his kicking display on the night mirrored that of a blind one-legged teenager on debut and ultimately cost his team the game, but what do they care anyway? They weren’t in Puma shirts.
The Kings accepted this kicking display with open arms and sealed yet another impressive victory against the odds. The stars on the night for the Kings was Makazole “The Finisher” Mapimpi who crossed the line twice and the boy band gorilla, Chris Cloete, was an absolute beast at the breakdowns.
Cheetahs v Stormers
The last time the two teams met it was a one-sided affair in favour of the home side, the Stormers. This past weekend was a much closer affair, although one would argue if the Stormers didn’t rest a few players it might have been another one-sided affair in Bloem.
The old Cheetahs issues surfaced, as old Cheetahs issues often do. “A lack of discipline” must be written in most Free State coaches’ autopsies as cause of death. The Stormers star player Marais, got injured early, but Cheslin Kolbe was a one man band and didn’t just take over the try scoring duties but also the goal kicking and basically beat the Cheetahs on his own.
The Cheetahs face an unsure future, with the swinging Super Rugby axe coming closer and rumours about a possible lifeline in the form of a pro-12 inclusion getting louder, we are left to watch how it all plays out. Even though I am a fan, I realise that the Cheetahs have mostly themselves to blame after year after year of not being a consistent threat to opposition and not reaching the top half of the log enough times.
The Kings, however, are placed higher on the log than former champs, the Bulls and yet they face the same fate as the Cheetahs. Enough food for thought to get mentally obese.
Lions v Sunwolves
The Lions picked their strongest side to make sure they get the maximum amount of points out of the match and boy, did they get points. If someone told me that the Lions broke every Sunwolves tackle, or whatever they like to call what they tried to do on defense, I would believe it.
The Sunwolves are collectors of the fine art of getting 90+ scores against them, after getting hammered 92 – 17 by the Cheetahs in 2016. The Lions ran riot and enjoyed the sparring session with Wolves, but it was a one way street and the Lions move closer to the top of the overall log.
A highlight for me was the “Angry Warthog” showing his pace on the wing, what brilliant entertainment from young Akker van der Merwe.
Anyway… Enough of all the talking and into this week Super Rugby Team of the Week!
|Thomas du Toit||Lizo Gqoboka||Jacques van Rooyen|
|Akker van der Merwe||Malcolm Marx||Akker van der Merwe|
|Frans Malherbe||Ross Geldenhuys||Ross Geldenhuys|
|Jason Jenkins||Armandt Koster||Jason Jenkins|
|RG Snyman||RG Snyman||RG Snyman|
|Jaco Kriel||Jaco Kriel||Chris Cloete|
|Tyler Paul||Tyler Paul||Kwagga Smith|
|Andisa Ntsila||Ruan Ackerman||Andisa Ntsila|
|Tiaan Meyer||Jano Vermaak||Faf de Klerk|
|Elton Jantjies||Lionel Cronje||Lionel Cronje|
|Cheslin Kolbe||Makazole Mapimpi||Makazole Mapimpi|
|Jan Serfontein||Jan Serfontein||Jan Serfontein|
|Francois Venter||Francois Venter||Francois Venter|
|Ruan Combrinck||Ruan Combrinck||Cheslin Kolbe|
|Warrick Gelant||Warrick Gelant||Warrick Gelant|
Who’s Super Rugby Team of the Week do you prefer? Vote below.
Written for The Pundits by @Justus_Beets