Round four of the Premier Division of Currie Cup 2019 kicked off last Friday night in Bloemfontein with a mouth-watering tussle between the last two unbeaten sides in the competition: Free State Cheetahs vs Golden Lions. The first half was all Cheetahs but the visitors came out strong in the second half.
The final score was 22-24 to Lions, as they leapt to the top of the log – for 24 hours or so. But the match also featured the funniest thing we have ever seen on a rugby field: Hacjivah Dayimani giving referee Jaco Peyper a high five for getting something right, for a change.
Saturday afternoon in Nelspruit was a battle to avoid this year’s wooden spoon between Pumas and Sharks. And the home team made heavy weather of it but eventually put away the worst team in the competition (27-20).
Later that day, Blue Bulls were thrashed by Griquas (15-37) leaving them in last place on the log with only two matches left. Occasional contributor, JW Coetzee, watched that game and had an interesting comment on Twitter last Saturday:
“I can't wait for the day that South African rugby administrators realise that non-one goes to a stadium to be shouted at, while all semblance of atmosphere is drowned out by 20-year old Afrikaans songs.”
Quite. Looking at the log, Griquas (on 15 points) sit on top while Lions (13) and Cheetahs (11) are second and third, but each with a game in hand. With only three rounds left, they seem likely semifinalists while Western Province, Pumas, Sharks and Bulls are battling for the last knock-out slot.