Thanks to the Bulls 23-5 win over the Free State Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday, Western Province’s fate in the Currie Cup series now lies in their own hands.
Stephen Nell writes in Die Burger that Province coach Allister Coetzee will now want to ensure that his team exploit the situation to their advantage.
The only way to do that is to keep winning in the remaining matches against the Boland Cavaliers and the Lions.
“Things are running nicely now. We just need to make sure that we play our part and focus on doing the basics right,” Coetzee said on Sunday in his response to the weekend’s events.
WP started off the Currie Cup weekend by beating Griquas 30-18 on Friday evening, thereby taking fourth position on the log from the Free State Cheetahs.
The Cheetahs’ inability to score a bonus point in their defeat means they are now in fifth place and worse off than WP as far as points difference (the difference between points scored and point conceded) is concerned.
WP and the Cheetahs both have 32 points, with points differences of 85 and 43 respectively.
Coetzee will be hoping that the weather comes to his party though, so as to avoid getting involved in a mud bath in Wellington on Saturday. It was only at the death that the Lions were able to score a bonus point in their 31-10 triumph over the Cavaliers on the wet field.
Won’t underestimate Boland
“The circumstances were difficult for the Lions. They don’t often practise in such conditions,” said Coetzee.
“However, it’s often wet during our practices and our training field is soft. So we have a foretaste of what to expect in Wellington.
“We’ve learned lessons there against the Bolanders in the past. We won’t make the mistake of underestimating them.”
Coetzee will decide on Monday whether he will select his strongest possible team for the match, or perhaps give his top Springboks a breather.
“It’s quite difficult not to field your best team in such circumstances. We’ll see how the players feel,” he said.
WP didn’t play to anywhere near their full potential on Friday night, but Coetzee has taken positives as well as negatives from the match.
“Our first phases were very good, but we weren’t good enough at the points of breakdown,” he said.
“We’ll make sure this week that we’re up to scratch in that department. “But it makes it easier now that our fate is in our own hands.
“We always say we control what we can, and we have to prepare ourselves correctly for the clash against Boland.”Tweet