Now that’s more like it! Last week we called an impressive 2 out 3 correct in terms of results but then strangely enough, we all went backwards with our Fantasy teams… Go figure. But one place where there will be no backwards motion this weekend – on the rugby field!
WESTERN PROVINCE vs GRIQUAS
After looking like a team on the rise, Province Problems flopped stupendously last weekend after Jebb “The Terminator” Sinclair and Tyrone “Sledgehammer” Holmes dished out some hits that are normally reserved for the squared circle! After witnessing Sonny Bill’s rise to fame as a “professional boxer”, these 2 clowns thought they’d show the world that they’ve also got the goods. The only problem is that they decided to show the touch judge and the referee as well – definitely not boxing smart. In summary, they can effectively field a big portion ALL of the blame for the loss to the Sharks during the swimming match last weekend. But come this weekend, the Mountain Men will find themselves at home after 3 tough away games and they will be looking to put the Blue & White dream back into gear. Very little could be taken out of the performance last weekend owing to the atrocious conditions that the match was played in and we’d have to say that it’s up to the Fantasy regulars to put the pedal to the metal! The combination of King Catrakilis (because he’s signed for the Kings – see what we did there!) and Marcel Brache in the backline will be vital to the cause this weekend, Captain Fourie will be expected to front up again (he always fronts up) and lastly, The Terminator would likely have been told to save his boxing antics for the early morning bar fights in Claremont. However, Province do have one potential Ace / Choker up their sleeve (depending on how you look at it) – Joe Pietersen returns to the field and the Newlands faithful will hope that he spent less time taking pictures of himself to put on Twitter and more time practising his kicking.
Unlike Joe Pietersen, Griquas are a team that don’t give a damn about Twitter! In fact, they’ve only just discovered how to SMS in Kimberley! But they don’t care, they don’t need short messages to do their talking – they save it all for the field. Griquas have knocked over the Lions, Sharks and Bulls all in succession and head to Cape Town with an ominous record to put to bed – they have not won a Currie Cup match against Province at Newlands in 101 years! Cue the music for the montage. To say that Griquas are a running team is an understatement, it really is. It’s like saying that Bryce Lawrence only made 1 or 2 mistakes while reffing the World Cup Semi Final last year. But moving on, the Cabbage Patch Kids will find themselves in unfamiliar territory this weekend – they will run out onto a field that is covered in grass! It’s interesting to see what this somewhat foreign phenomena will have on their running game but if Willie Le Roux and Rocco Jansen have anything to do with it – then the effect will be zero! Someone else from the Diamond Miners who has turned into an absolute gem (sorry) is the man orchestrating the backline offensive – Francois Brummer. He kicks just as well as any of the other number 10’s and has even dotted down a couple of times. Captain Ryno Barnes returns to the fold this weekend after a 1 match suspension and with a name like that, you wouldn’t dare insult his mother. And lastly, a special mention can go to that somewhat mentally unstable peroxide haired freak on the side of the Griquas scrum – Marnus Schoeman. He is angry. We don’t know why. But it’s effective.
Tough to say really, Province were on a roll and Griquas are on a roll. Province finally return home and Griquas have to play away from home (at a venue where they haven’t recorded a W in 101 years). I could be tarred and feathered for saying so but GRIQUAS to show that dreams can come true. (like a crappy Disney movie)
Fantasy Managers Note
The verdict is a tough one but both of these teams have been scoring plenty of tries this season. You also might want to stay away from selecting The Terminator – Griquas play rough and his Canadian feathers could get ruffled very easily.
BLUE BULLS vs FREE STATE CHEETAHS
A match between losers! But one team is under significantly more pressure to perform than the other. The Highveld Hero’s Zero’s have got it all to lose and a lot to gain for the remainder of the competition! A highly unlikely scenario but unless the Blue Bulls switch on faster than a kettle on a Monday morning then they could find themselves in a playoff tussle with the EP Kings for Currie Cup 2013! It really has got that bad for the Pine Pienaar and the Bulls – so much so that Jacques Potgieter and Jano Vermaak have earned automatic selection for this weekend’s encounter. CJ Stander continues to be a Fantasy standout scoring everything from tries to any chicks who stand in his way and Willie Wepener continues to pursue his dream of one day lining up next to Usain Bolt on the starting line and therein possibly lies the problem with this bunch of individuals. It happened already this year – the Auckland Blues! (And it seems a little bit more than coincidence that they should share the same colour scheme in the team name) We don’t need to list the names, the Bulls are loaded with some serious firepower but right now, even Rebecca Black is more threatening. I’m sure many Blue Bulls fans are asking this question and so are we – what is going on? And while we give credit where it is due, we only feel that it is fair to issue some disrespect as well – who is JJ Englebrecht?
The Cheetahs meanwhile seem content to play with everyone’s emotions like some crappy boy band amongst the throngs of teenage girls! One weekend hot, the next weekend not! Raymond Rhule has been promoted from wing to centre – that doesn’t happen very often and it should be an interesting one to watch. Super Sarel continues to be evergreen and is racking more points than any other scrummie in the competition! Heinrich Brussow on the other hand has not been as impressive as he has been hungry – week in and week out, the South African rugby public are subject to plenty of lip service but without the service delivery! (Rumour has it that he will pursue a career within the ANC once his rugby playing days are over) Sias “Simple Jack” Ebersohn has been relegated to bench duty for the 2nd weekend in a row after being replaced by a scrumhalf in the number 10 position- says a lot about the confidence that the coach has in him! When he isn’t running out for the Cheetahs on weekends, Tewis De Bruyn can be found directing traffic flow on some of the parking lots at Durban beachfront – didn’t his parents teach him about sun cream?! But, not is all lost for the Cheetahs…. rolling in like the thunder before a summer storm comes the reigning 2012 Parking Lot Bare Knuckle Brawl Champion – Coenie Oosthuizen. The tackle breaking, ball carrying machine is likely to inflict damage on defenders with his enthusiasm for the contact point and he is also likely to inflict damage on supporters with his terrible haircut!
Like every match in the Currie Cup – it’s a tough one! The Bulls are under performing worse than a teenager on a first date and the Cheetahs are changing their spots every weekend. You have to feel that the Bulls are going to click at some stage but they just never do, CHEETAHS to bring the Bloem magic to Pretoria!
Fantasy Managers Note
Raymond has been moved to the number 13 jersey and so has JJ Englebrecht – we don’t know what either of these coaches are thinking and this game will probably be unpredictable!
GOLDEN LIONS vs SHARKS
The clash of the Titans – 1 plays 2! The Golden Lions finally see themselves at the top of the pile again and playing with the vigor of a matric student at year end Rage! The Lions Elton Jantjies can give themselves himself a pat on the back – the number 10 continues to dominate the opposition harder than the ANC dominate their opposition come election time. We have spoken about it before here at FRS – if you give “The Haircut” an opportunity to kick at posts then he will punish you. Bold statement, but if Morne “I Don’t Miss” Steyn was selected on the basis of his kicking strength then – - – (you fill in the blanks). However, apparently there is an injury crisis at the Lions – Alwyn Hollenbach might not be ready come game time and his replacement is none other than Jaco Taute. Oh damn. How crap… The Lions are playing test match rugby and they are doing it well. And they are doing it with more success than the Springboks! Johan Ackermann may play the role of a coach these days but he still isn’t the type of guy that anyone would want to cause crap with and it seems to be rubbing off on the players. The Lions are more focused these days and seem intent on collecting the digits in the W column. However, the Lions run out this weekend without the formidable presence of “The Beard” – Jaco Strauss has left, for good. He has gone and it remains to be seen what effect that will have on the moral of the Lions – he really did have a presence, goodbye you bearded, half-bred neanderthal.
The Sharks will be returning to Ellis Park (yes, we know that is not the proper name) with terrible memories from last year’s Currie Cup final and this year’s supposedly “easy” Super 15 game – neither of which turned out exactly how they thought they would. Not a bad position to be in as a team in a competition where away wins are as unique as an uninterrupted electrical supply in South Africa. The Banana Boys have bolstered their ranks with returning Springboks Lwazi “Mvroom Vroom” Mvovo and Craig “Bosvark” Burden and it’s obvious that these guys have been brought in for frontline action! Sharks fans will also be grinning at the likelihood of seeing the centre combination of Tim “I Left Cape Town Because Nick Lives There” Whitehead and Paul “Mustachio” Jordaan finally playing together again! What a sight to behold, a centre pairing without walking sticks and zimmer frames! However, it’d be unfair to say that Meyer “X-Factor” Bosman hasn’t played well in recent weeks because he really has. After tackling himself in front of an open tryline during the playoff match against the Reds in the Super 15 season, the next big thing in Springbok rugby has seemingly got his ducks in a row after 10 years of professional rugby… Anyway, Sharks fans will be hoping to see a complete performance from the masters of the Jeckyl and Hyde show – they have the ammunition but will they bring the bazooka or the BB gun?!
Super Rugby really is a far easier battle to call and that says a lot about the level of competition in the local realm. It really is a different case every weekend – home and away seem to count for a lot in this competition but no single team has stamped it’s authority on the Currie Cup thus far. You know, when we not sure, who we’re gonna back? SHARKS to keep stirring the massive mixing pot of Currie Cup Rugby!
Fantasy Managers Note
2 Contrasting styles of rugby will be on offer for these 2 teams this weekend. You will have to pick a team and back it, and hopefully you pick the Lions, and lose (so Shaun can catch up).