The Currie Cup returns today with some mouth-watering clashes on the cards, the feature match shows the Bulls hosting Western Province on Saturday night. Clashes between these two giants always produce fireworks, and you can expect the same on Saturday. Both sides are coming off back to back victories, the Bulls currently sitting on top of the log over provincial rivals the Lions. The Pretoria side already have two bonus point victories, giving them an already 9 point gap over Province. The Loftis faithful will be hoping for a strong performance from their boys, as they’re currently on a 4 game consecutive losing streak against the Cape Town outfit. Overall though, the Bulls have a marginal winning advantage over their rivals with 18 wins, 2 draws and 16 losses between the heavyweights going back to 1996. Look out for Werner Kruger, running out for the 100th time under the lights of Loftus.
The Griquas host the Cheetahs after a spirited display last week against the Bulls, the side remains unchanged. Clayton Blommetjies moves to the full back position to replace the injured Coertzen, giving Sergeal Petersen a Currie Cup debut on the wing. The two sides kick off tonight at 7 in Kimberley, where many up and coming stars should feature. The EP Kings tackle the Pumas in PE Friday night, injuries to Tim and George Whitehead means Ronnie Cooke returning to the starting lineup of the Kings. While for the Pumas, Corne Fourie will start his first match of the season at loosehead, while lock Rudi Matthee replaces Giant Mtyanda who will be warming the bench.
The Sharks welcome the Lions to Durban on Saturday looking to improve their fantastic win record against the side from Johannesburg. Andre Esterhuizen will have a familiar partner in midfield in Paul Jordaan following his long injury absence. S’bura Sithole has also recovered from a kock and will play on the wing. The other back line change sees the experienced Michael Claassens replacing Ungerer at scrumhalf. Dale Chadwick is another returning star, and will reclaim the number 1 jersey.
As for the Lions, coach Ackerman seems to be shifting much of the team around still looking for a consistent balance. Ruan Dreyer and Robbie Coetzee return as loose head and hooker. MB Luusaseni begins as lock and Kwagga Smith at flank. At the back, Ruan Combrink will play on the right wing while Stokkies Hanekom will start in the center following an injury to Harold Vorster.
It promises to be another epic weekend of bone crunching tackles and last minute drama as the Currie Cup steadily rolls along. Be sure to check BetXchange for up to the minute odds on all the matches, as well as a variety of other bets you can place on each game.
3/1 EP Kings 25/1 Draw 3/10 Pumas
23/10 Griquas 25/1 Draw 4/10 Cheetahs
14/10 Sharks 25/1 Draw 6/10 Lions
1/1 Bulls 25/1 Draw 9/10 Western Province