Let’s look at the round 3 match-ups and see if we can get the winners right.
All three games are on Saturday this week, so with the Bok game coming up at 9pm, there’s absolutely no excuse for spending a single moment away from the couch all afternoon!
Griquas v Cheetahs
First up it’s the central derby and while Pote Human has again made back line changes, the sad reality is that Griquas have thus far failed to live up to expectations. As the only side yet to register a win, few would be brave enough to put money on them doing so against a Cheetahs team that will feature Johan Goosen at flyhalf. It could be a bit of a scrappy game, but we expect the Cheetahs to win comfortably, by around 8 points.
Griquas: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Jannie Boshoff, 13 Stefan Watermeyer, 12 Walter Venter, 11 Rocco Jansen, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Jacques Coetzee, 8 Leon Karemaker, 7 Justin Downey, 6 Wesley Wilkins, 5 Martin Muller, 4 Ligtoring Landman, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Ryno Barnes (captain), 1 Steph Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Matt Dobson, 17 Janro van Niekerk, 18 Ivann Espag, 19 Frikkie Spies, 20 Chase Minnaar, 21 Marnus Hugo, 22 Marnitz Boshoff.
Free State Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Ryno Benjamin, 13 Robert Ebersohn (captain), 12 Barry Geel, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Lucas Floors, 7 Pieter Labuschagne, 6 Frans Viljoen, 5 Izak van der Westhuizen, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Hercu Liebenberg, 1 Trevor Nyakane.
Replacements: 16 Elandré Huggett, 17 Schalk van der Merwe, 18 Francois Uys, 19 Davon Raubenheimer, 20 Tewis de Bruyn, 21 Sias Ebersohn, 22 Nico Scheepers.
Lions v WP
The blows just keep coming for the poor Lions, who have injury woes to contend with along with their numerous financial and legal problems of late. They’ve yet to announce their side, but given the limp showing they produced at Kings Park last week, it’s hard to see them outplaying a Province outfit that has been strengthened by some Bok discards. Elton Jantjies should be back to add some direction to the backline, but it remains to be seen whether the inclusion of one “almost Bok” does enough to arrest the Lions’ slide. We see WP winning by around 5 points.
WP: 15. Gio Aplon, 14. Gerhard van den Heever, 13. Juan de Jongh (vice-captain), 12. Marcel Brache, 11. Ederies Arendse, 10. Demetri Catrakilis, 9. Louis Schreuder, 8. Duane Vermeulen, 7. Tyrone Holmes, 6. Siya Kolisi, 5. De Kock Steenkamp, 4. Don Armand, 3. Frans Malherbe, 2. Deon Fourie (captain), 1. Steven Kitshoff
Replacements: 16 Siyabonga Ntubeni, 17 Brok Harris, 18 Wilhelm van der Sluys, 19 Jebb Sinclair, 20 Dewaldt Duvenage, 21 JP du Plessis, 22 Kurt Coleman.
Blue Bulls v Sharks
The Sharks will need to dig deep this week to extend their unbeaten run to three games. While reports of flu decimating the Bulls camp have dominated the news during the week, the Sharks will be severely weakened without Craig Burden and Meyer Bosman, their foremost try and point scorers respectively. The Sharks aren’t afraid of playing at Loftus any more, though and while expected to be out gunned in the set pieces, should have the Bulls’ number amongst the half backs, with the Sharks pair vastly more experienced. Riaan Viljoen has spearheaded the team to two victories already this season despite the pack being beaten and our call is that he will again be instrumental this week. Sharks to win by 4 points.
Blue Bulls: 15 Jürgen Visser, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 Johann Sadie, 12 Francois Venter, 11 Clayton Blommetjies, 10 Louis Fouché, 9 Ruan Snyman, 8 Dewald Potgieter (captain), 7 CJ Stander, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 Dawie Steyn
Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Cornell Hess, 19 Arno Botha, 20 Rudi Paige, 21 Lionel Cronjé, 22 Jan Serfontein
Sharks: 15. Louis Ludik, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. Paul Jordaan, 12. Marius Joubert, 11. S’bura Sithole, 10. Riaan Viljoen, 9. Charl McLeod, 8. Jacques Botes, 7. Jean Deysel (Captain), 6. Francois Kleinhans, 5. Anton Bresler, 4. Steven Sykes, 3. Wiehahn Herbst, 2. Monde Hadebe, 1. Dale Chadwick
Replacements: 16. Franco Marais, 17. Julian Redelinghuys, 18. Jandre Marais, 19. Lubabalo “Tera” Mtembu, 20. Brynard Stander, 21. Cobus Reinach, 22. Gouws Prinsloo