Suzuki Griquas on track to host SA Cup final

rugby06 May 2024 08:30
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In an exhilarating back-and-forth tussle between SA Cup frontrunners, Suzuki Griquas and the Airlink Pumas, the team from Kimberley managed to snatch a late victory in their game and cemented their spot at the top of the log.

With two rounds remaining, this 31-26 victory put Suzuki Griquas on the inside lane to host a home final.

The match in Kimberley on Friday afternoon was a thrilling encounter, and Suzuki Griquas staged a dramatic comeback to snatch victory in the 81st minute from the visitors from Mbombela.

The match kicked off with an early try from the Airlink Pumas within five minutes of the game. The first half largely favoured the visitors, who led 16-3 just before halftime. However, a timely try right before the break injected hope into the hosts’ camp.

A rejuvenated Suzuki Griquas side dominated the second half, taking the lead 17-16 on the 57th-minute mark. Yet, their advantage was short-lived as the Airlink Pumas quickly reclaimed the lead.

The hosts found themselves trailing by two points with time up on the clock but a remarkable try by Cameron Hufke sealed the victory and secured the top spot.


In the first match on Saturday, the Phangela SWD Eagles hosted the NovaVit Griffons, with the latter clinching a crucial 36-28 victory on the road.

Despite maintaining their third-place position on the log, the Griffons closed the gap to just one point behind the Pumas. Both the teams from Mpumalanga and the Northern Free State must secure wins in the last two rounds to keep their playoff hopes alive, but the Eagles have slipped to seventh on the log.

Meanwhile, at the Leeudoringstad Rugby Klub, the Leopards suffered their fourth defeat against a formidable Sanlam Boland Kavaliers team, who won by 59-26.

Spectators were treated to an impressive display as a total of 13 tries were scored, with the visitors bagging nine tries to the four of the hosts. This win kept Boland in fifth place, while the Leopards dropped to eighth.

The standout performance of the weekend came from the Toyota Cheetahs, who secured a resounding 68-17 victory over the Valke, scoring 10 tries to the Valke's three.

Although this result didn't alter the log, with the Cheetahs remaining in fourth place and the Valke in ninth, the Free Staters will remain hopeful for a final spot if they win their remaining games and one of the teams above them slips up.

In the final game of the weekend, Eastern Province claimed a 38-17 victory over the Border Bulldogs in their Eastern Cape derby, with EP fullback Mbembe Payi's, hat-trick contributing to a comfortable bonus point win.

This triumph propelled Eastern Province up two places on the log, while the Bulldogs remain at the bottom, still seeking their first points of the season.


Suzuki Griquas 31 Airlink Pumas 26

Griquas – Tries: Thabo Ndimande, Cameron Hufke, Lubabalo Dobela. Conversions: George Whitehead (3) Penalty goal: George Whitehead.

Pumas – Tries: Ross Braude, Theuns Pretorius. Conversions: Clinton Swart (2). Penalty goals: Clinton Swart (4).

Phangela SWD Eagles 28 NovaVit Griffons 36

SWD – Tries: Heinrich Roelfse, Mpho Ntsane, JP Duvenage, Sachin Toring. Conversions: Joshua Vermeulen (4).

Griffons – Tries: Micheal Benadie, Thomas Ongera, obbie Petzer, Domenic Smit, Dandre Delport. Conversions: Danrich Visagie (4). Penalty goal: Visagie.

Leopards 26 Sanlam Boland Kavaliers 59

Leopards – Tries: Mncedisi Dlwengu (2), Sanele Zungu, Charles Williams. Conversions: Charles Williams (3).

Boland – Tries: Thurlow Marsh, Bentley Geldenhuys (5), Xavier Mitchell, Riaan Louw, Gavern Skippers. Conversions: Garth April (7).

Valke 17 Toyota Cheetahs 68

Valke – Tries: Godfrey Muzanargwo, Anrich Richter (2). Conversion: Sergio Stalmeester.

Cheetahs – Tries: Marnus van der Merwe, Mzwanele Zito, Sibabalo Qoma, Munier Hartzenberg (2), Sbu Nkosi, Tapiwa Mafura, Rethabile Mzamo (2). Conversions: Andell Loubser (9).

Eastern Province 38 Border Bulldogs 17

Eastern Provine – Tries: Temba Boltina, Mbembe Payi (3), Aya Oliphant, Luxolo Koza. Conversions: Darryle Kameel (2) Ruben de Vos (2).

Border - Try: Lwandile Mapuko. Penalty goals: Merlin du Plessis (4).