Western Province hit the Golden Lions like a runaway train – especially in the first half – in their Currie Cup clash at Ellis Park on Saturday afternoon, cruising to a 65-38 win.
Scoring five of their nine tries in the first half, Province went into halftime with a commanding lead of 39-10, exposing some very soft defence from the Lions.
With left wing SP Marais scoring 25 points, the powerful Province forwards laid the foundation and the dangerous Lions backline was left to feed from scraps and forced to play catch-up.
This Province side is definitely showing why they are hot favourites to retain the title.
Despite clearly being chastened, the hosts did at least score 28 points in the second 40.
Who was the star in this match?
While there were strong performances from Province fullback Dillyn Leyds and flanker Kobus van Dyk, the young and powerful No 8 Juarno Augustus showed why he is being tipped as a future Bok. It was his strong running that created the opportunity for Leyds to score his team’s first try.
Key moments and themes
- Province started off like a house on fire with Leyds scoring the first try after just 58 seconds. The message was very much clear: they were going to run the Lions off their feet.
- While the Lions hit back to score their first try by flank James Venter, Province, in general, were rampant and scored four more opening half tries exposing some poor Lions defence, which clearly still needs to find its rhythm.
- The big turning point for the Lions arrived in the 23rd minute – during Province’s profitable period – when they looked certain to score until a pass from centre Lionel Mapoe, with a double overlap in the offing, was intercepted by Province wing Sergeal Petersen. It was effectively a 14-point turnaround and put the visitors out of reach.
- The Lions showed customary attacking flair in the second half but simply didn’t have the composure to claw their way back, especially in limiting Province’s scoring opportunities.
Golden Lions – Tries: James Venter, Penalty Try, Pieter Jansen, Hacjivah Dayimani, Len Massyn. Conversions: Shaun Reynolds (5). Penalty: Reynolds.
Western Province – Tries: Dillyn Leyds (2), Sergeal Petersen (2), Josh Stander, SP Marais, Juarno Augustus, JD Schickerling, Dan du Plessis. Conversions: Marais (7). Penalties: Marais (2).