Curwin Bosch kicked 15 points off the tee to propel the Sharks to a 35-20 victory over Western Province in Currie Cup action at Kings Park Stadium on Wednesday evening.
The Sharks got on the try column through Inny Radebe, Celimpilo Gumede, Fezokuhle Mbatha and Marnus Potgieter, while Leolin Zas and Kade Wolhuter dotted down for Province. Meanwhile, Curwin Bosch made an excellent return to the Sharks side as he slotted three conversions and three penalties for a total tally of 15 points.
Western Province got an early lineout and took it into contact. Godlen Masimla’s pass from the base was knocked on as WP got the feed to the scrum on their own 22. However, the Sharks got the ascendancy and won a penalty, but Bosch missed from the tee.
In the eighth minute, Sharks fullback Radebe knocked the ball on. WP set up the scrum and the Sharks strayed offside with Swiel kicking the resulting penalty through the poles for a 3-0 lead to the visitors.
It was a scrappy affair in the opening 20 minutes with knock-ons aplenty resulting in several scrums. The Sharks scrum, as it has been for most of the season, was proving to be dominant. Once again they pushed the WP scrum backwards in the 22nd minute winning the penalty advantage with Bosch making no mistake from the tee.
The Durbanites scored the first try of the game soon afterwards. Scrumhalf Cameron Wright sent a long kick downfield and Andre Manuel kept the ball in play, but was isolated and Sean Everitt’s side won the ball back. Wright swung it to Radebe off the back of the ruck and Radebe dived over in the corner. Bosch added the extras from the tee to make it 10-3 to the Sharks with just under a half-an-hour gone in the contest.
The Sharks suffered a blow when they went down to ten men soon after taking the lead when Yaw Penxe received a yellow card for a high tackle on Masimla. WP captain Swiel pointed to the posts and converted to cut the deficit to four.
John Dobson’s men were in the ascendancy and deservedly edged in front. Province won the lineout and set up a driving maul. They drove to the Sharks 5m line and Masimla swung it to Swiel, who decided to kick across the field and Zas walked over the line to score. Swiel kicked it over from the corner for a 10-13 lead.
It became 14 versus 14 when Swiel was sent to the sin-bin and Bosch made no mistake with the resulting penalty to equal the scores as the sides went into half-time.
The Sharks restored their lead shortly after half-time. After some serious pressure from the hosts, Gumede picked the ball up off the back of the ruck on the five-metre line and drove over to score. Everitt’s side extended their lead when Mbatha went over at the back of a driving maul.
Bosch extended the lead to 28-13 with another penalty before the Sharks grabbed their fourth try. Penxe collected the up and under and the ball got swung across the field for Marnus Potgieter to dot down in the corner. Bosch added the extras for a 35-13 lead.
Province were dead and buried by this point but managed to pull a try back in the 72nd minute. They set up the driving maul and got closer to the line before the ball was sent out wide to Wolhuter, who scored in the corner.
That would be mere consolation for Dobson’s side, who were well beaten in the end.
Sharks – Tries: Radebe, Gumede, Mbatha, Potgieter. Cons: Bosch (3). Pens: Bosch (3). Yellow Card: Penxe.
Western Province – Tries: Zas, Wolhuter. Cons: Swiel (2). Pens: Swiel (2). Yellow Card: Swiel.
Sharks: 15 Inny-Christian Radebe, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Werner Kok, 12 Marius Louw (captain), 11 Marnus Potgieter, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Cameron Wright, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Celimpilo Gumede, 6 James Venter, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Emile van Heerden, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Fezokuhle Mbatha, 1 Khwezi Mona.
Replacements: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Dian Bleuler, 18 Hanru Jacobs, 19 Le Roux Roets, 20 Thembelani Bholi, 21 Olajuwon Noa, 22 Sanele Nohamba, 23 Murray Koster.
Western Province: 15 Sergeal Petersen, 14 Andre Manuel, 13 Mnombo Zwelendaba, 12 Cornel Smit, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Tim Swiel (captain), 9 Godlen Masimla, 8 Keke Morabe, 7 Simon Miller, 6 Roelof Smit, 5 David Meihuizen, 4 Connor Evans, 3 Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, 2 Chad Solomon, 1 Allister Vermaak.
Replacements: 16 Jacques Goosen, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Corne Weilbach, 19 Hilton Lobberts, 20 Hannes Gous, 21 Thomas Bursey, 22 Kade Wolhuter, 23 Ethan James.
Referee: Griffin Colby
Assistant referees: Cwengile Jadezweni, Zukile Madikizela
TMO: Egon Seconds