Dominant first-half sees Sharks to victory
August 12, 2016

The Cell C Sharks turned in an impressive first-half performance on their way to a 46-24 (halftime 31-10) win over the Griquas in their Currie Cup Premier Division match at Growthpoint Kings Park in Durban on Friday.

The Sharks wrapped up their four-try bonus point shortly before halftime as they blew Griquas away in the first half as the hosts opened up a 21-point lead at the break.

The home team eventually ran in six tries to three as they withstood a spirited fightback from the visitors in the second half with fullback Curwin Bosch slotting five conversions and two penalties to end with 16 points.

The Sharks opened the scoring in just the second minute when they mauled the ball over from 10 metres out with lock Etienne Oosthuizen crashing over for a converted try.

Left wing S’bura Sithole nabbed the second try, in the 8th minute, when he burst his way past three defenders on a 15-metre run before fullback Curwin Bosch slotted the conversion.

The Sharks were adopting an exciting, ball-in-hand approach with some impressive handling skills on show as they launched a succession of attacks against a dogged Griquas’ defence.

The visitors finally opened their account as the first quarter of the match ended as flyhalf Clinton Swart nailed a penalty attempt.

Bosch struck back with a 40-metre penalty as the Sharks restored their 14-point lead in the 28th minute.

But the Griquas grabbed their first try in fine fashion as Swart collected his own chip ahead before feeding scrumhalf Rudi van Rooyen who sprinted clear for a converted score.

The hosts then took advantage of an overthrown Griquas’ lineout with loose forwards Philip van der Walt and Tera Mtembu combining to put inside centre Andre Esterhuizen through for a converted try.

Griquas were then reduced to 14 men, just before the break, when replacement hooker AJ le Roux was yellow-carded for cynical play as he entered a maul from the side.

The hosts took advantage moments later as scrumhalf Stefan Ungerer twisted his way over for the bonus-point try as the Sharks went to the break holding an impressive 31-10 lead.

The Griquas started the second half strongly and they came close to adding to their score only to be held out by some stout defence from the Sharks.

But left wing Alshaun Bock then produced a moment of magic as he set off up the left-hand touch line before cutting back, on a 40-metre run, to confound the defence on his way to a converted try in the 55th minute.

The Sharks finally found their groove in the second half when a sweeping backline move, from 40 metres out, saw Mtembu on hand to gallop over untouched for an unconverted score.

The Griquas continued to scrap and outside centre JW Jonker collected his own chip ahead, despite the attentions of two defenders, to go over for a converted try as the visitors made the score 36-24 after 64 minutes.

Bosch nailed another long-range penalty to open the gap to 15 points before the Sharks wrapped up the win when replacement flank Jean Deysel dotted down after a pushover scrum.


Cell C Sharks – Tries: Etienne Oosthuizen, S’bura Sithole, Andre Esterhuizen. Stefan Ungerer, Tera Mtembu, Jean Deysel; Conversions: Curwin Bosch (5); Penalties: Bosch (2).

Griquas – Tries: Rudi van Rooyen, Alshaun Bock, JW Jonker; Conversions: Clinton Swart (3); Penalty: Swart.

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