It took two surprises to see the Xerox Lions and the Leopards become part of the eight sides to fight it out for the Vodacom Cup and the R1-million on offer to the champion.
The IOL reports that the Lions didn’t do much this weekend to deserve their position and set up a quarter-final against neighbours and traditional foes Blue Bulls.
They lost 41-33 to the Kavaliers in Wellington, but made it through on points difference when the Valke unexpectedly lost 38-36 to the lowly Mighty Elephants in Port Elizabeth. A draw would have seen the Valke through.
The Leopards surprised the Wildebeest in Pietermartizburg (37-32) to move into third place on the North section’s log. The Wildebeest are nevertheless in the quarters.
* The weakened Blue Bulls with an expected drubbing (50-8) of the only winless side in the competition Border in East London, saw them top the North section, and Western Province retained their top position on the South section log with their 23-all draw with Griquas while it cost Griquas the first place in the North section.
* Free State, who lost their previous two matches with half-centuries compiled against them by the Blue Bulls and Griquas, this time hit the half-century mark themselves in beating the hapless Griffons 80-3.
* The Eagles, in notching up their third win of the competition, ended their disappointing Vodacom Cup campaign on a high when they scored eight tries to beat the Pumas 50-12 in George.
* The quarterfinals, to be played on April 26, are as follows (first-mentioned sides play at home, venues to be announced):
Blue Bulls v Xerox Lions,
Western Province v Wildebeest,
Griquas v Leopards,
Free State v Boland Kavaliers.