Viljoen inspires Griquas to upset win
Jason Humphries
May 02, 2009
The GWK Griquas, led by a superb individual performance from flyhalf Riaan Viljoen, upset the form book as they romped to a 36-25 (halftime 21-9) victory over the Sharks XV in their Vodacom Cup semifinal in Durban on Saturday.

Viljoen, who contributed 26 points, received excellent support from his forwards who turned in a ferocious first half display.

The Sharks XV, who had been unbeaten in this year’s competition, brought themselves back into the match in the second half only for Viljoen to score a try in the dying minutes to give Griquas a chance to build on their three previous Vodacom Cup championships.

Two penalties from Viljoen and one from Sharks XV fullback Monty Dumond left the match evenly poised at 6-3 before the Griquas’ forwards persistence paid off when left wing Trompie Nontshinga crossed the Sharks XV tryline untouched in the 17th minute after his forwards had driven the ball to within centimeters of the Sharks XV line. The converted try stretched Griquas lead to 13-3 before Dumond’s second penalty cut the gap to seven points in the 24th minute.

Viljoen almost immediately restored the 10 point lead with a 35 meter drop goal before a turnover by the Sharks XV in their 22 saw Nontshinga canter over for his second try in the 28th minute to give Griquas a 21-6 lead before Dumond’s third penalty took the sides to the break.

Two Dumond penalties, and an improved forward display from the Sharks XV, after the break saw the home-side reduce the deficit to six points after 49 minutes.

However, after the restart, following Dumond’s second penalty, a sweeping Griquas backline move allowed Viljoen to score in the corner with the flyhalf converting his own try.

Dumond’s sixth penalty in the 54th minute allowed the Sharks XV to creep into the game once again with the score 28-18 in favour of Griquas.

The match then settled into an arm-wrestle before Sharks XV replacement scrumhalf Alex Kock wriggled over the tryline after a quick tap penalty in the 66th minute.

Dumond duly converted to leave the Sharks XV trailing by a mere three points but once again the Sharks XV concentration deserted them after a restart allowing Viljoen to stretch Griquas lead to six points with his third penalty.

With less than two minutes to go Griquas sealed the win for his team after a successful kick and chase from Viljoen saw the flyhalf go over in the corner for his second try.


Sharks XV 25 - Try: Alex Kock. Conversion: Monty Dumond. Penalties: Monty Dumond (6).

GWK Griquas 36 - Tries: Trompie Nontshinga (2), Riaan Viljoen (2). Conversions: Riaan Viljoen (2). Penalties: Riaan Viljoen (3). Drop goal: Riaan Viljoen

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