The Final: Head to head

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks, WP on 29 Oct 2010 at 15:17
Tagged with : , , , ,

Right, now that both teams have been finalised, let’s do a comparison of the lineups and see where the advantage, if any, may lie.

The front row:
For the Sharks, starting will be Beast Mtawarira, Bismarck du Plessis and Jannie du Plessis. Combined weight is 345kg and they boast a total of 87 Sharks Currie Cup caps (and 74 test caps) between them. Jannie also has a few years’ worth of Currie Cup caps for Free state thrown in. Up against them are the Province trio of JD Moller, Deon Fourie and Brock Harris, who weigh in at a combined 331kg, giving the Sharks a weight advantage of almost 5kg a man in the front row. None of the Province front row has been capped by the Springboks and they boast 151 Currie Cup caps between them. On the bench, the Sharks have Eugene van Staden (118kg) and Craig Burden (100kg) against Province’s JC Kritzinger (116kg) and Hanyani Shimange (104kg). While Shimmie is the most experienced man there (9 tests), it’s been a long time since he played at that level. Few could argue that van Staden and Burden are the players with form behind them at the moment.

Verdict: On paper, the Sharks front row should dominate this contest, hands down.

The second row:
The Sharks have Alistair Hargreaves (2.01m and 114kg) and Steven Sykes (1.98m and 118kg) starting at lock. Hargreaves will be the only capped lock on the park having played in just two test matches. The pair boast 113 Currie Cup caps between them. On the Province side, Anton van Zyl (1.93m and 111kg) and Adriaan Fondse (1.96m and 116kg) will start and they have far more Currie Cup caps from their previous provinces than their combined total of 39 for WP. The combined weights are roughly equal, with the Sharks around 2kg a man heavier on average. Height is one area where the Sharks clearly dominate, though, with Hargreaves in particular a full 8cm taller than his opponent. Both sides boast greenhorns on the bench – the Sharks have Anton Bresler (1.98m and 112kg with 3 caps) and Province have de Kock Steenkamp (1.97m, 108kg and 12 caps).

Verdict: This one is closer, but the Sharks still edge it slightly.

That gives the Sharks supremacy in the tight five overall, with the starting weight advantage of 577kg to 558kg in their favour.

The loose forwards:
The Sharks will be starting with Keegan Daniel (1.88m and 94kg), Willem Alberts (1.92m and 119kg) and Ryan Kankowski (1.93m and 107kg). Only Kankowski has been capped by the Boks (16 times) and the trio boast 130 Currie Cup caps for the Sharks between them, with Alberts bringing a fair few more from his Lions days. Up against them are Schalk Burger (1.93m and 112kg), Francois Louw (1.96m and 112kg) and Duane Vermeulen (1.93m and 111kg). Burger and Louw boast 70 test caps between them, and the trio has a combined 95 Currie Cup caps for Province, with Vermeulen having also represented the Pumas and the Cheetahs at this level. The Sharks weigh in at a combined 320kg, against Province’s heftier 335kg. The Sharks boast an average height of 1.91m against 1.94m for Province. On the bench, the Sharks have the more experienced player in Jacques Botes (1.82m, 99kg and 84 caps), while Pieter Louw (1.91m, 96kg and 52 caps) has been in superb form of late.

Verdict: On paper, Western Province have a bigger and more experienced loose trio. The individual form of Daniel and Alberts does even things up a little, but not enough to tip this contest in the Sharks’ favour.

The Sharks are slightly ahead in the total pack weight stakes, with 897kg playing 892kg. On balance, we’ll give the Sharks overall supremacy up-front, based on the clear gulf in class between the respective front rows. It’s going to be tight, though.

The halfbacks:
Comparisons of height and weight mean little amongst the halfbacks, meaning we need to have a more subjective look here. The Sharks duo of Charl McLeod and Patrick Lambie cannot boast the experience of their counterparts, Ricky Januarie (47 test matches) and Willem de Waal. The latter, in particular, has been playing in (and winning) Currie Cup finals since Lambie started high school. The bench evens things up alarmingly, though, with Rory Kockott and Andre Pretorius (31 tests) clearly edging their Province counterparts Dewaldt Duvenage and Lionel Cronje in terms of experience.

Verdict: The Sharks halfbacks are in better individual form and they have better bench options, despite Province’s better experience. Ricky Januarie is a wiley customer and De Waal’s boot is always a threat, but McLeod and Lambie, as a combination, better suit the game their side wants to play. We give this to the Sharks, but not by a huge amount.

The centres: The Sharks will start with Andries Strauss (1.86m and 97kg) and Stefan Terblanche (1.87m and 95kg) who boast 139 Currie Cup caps for the Sharks, along with Terblanche’s 37 test caps. Up against them are the veteran Jean de Villiers (1.9m and 103kg) and Juan de Jongh (1.77m and 85kg) and with the Province pair boasting 69 (recent) test caps between them, the fact that, as a pair, they have relatively few Currie Cup caps doesn’t really matter. On the bench, the Sharks have another big man in Riaan Swanepoel (1.83m and 103kg) while Province’s Paul Bosch is a more moderate 1.8m and 86kg.

Verdict: No matter which way you look at this contest, Province wins it hands down. The Sharks centres are defensively very solid – porbably about as good as their Province counterparts, but on attack, the men from the Cape have no equal.

The back three: The Sharks will start with Lwazi Mvovo (1.85m and 91kg), Odwa Ndungane (1.84m and 96kg) and Louis Ludik (1.83m and 92kg). Only Ndungane has been capped by the Boks, on 7 occasions. There’s not really much point in quibbling about domestic caps here. Their Province counterparts, Bryan Habana (1.80m and 94kg), Gio Aplon (1.75m and 74kg) and Conrad Jantjes (1.83m and 90kg) boast 100 test between them.

Verdict: The only place where the Sharks stack up well here is in terms height and weight, where each man is bigger than his opponent. This is particularly clear on the Sharks left wing, were there would appear to be a big mismatch between Mvovo and Aplon. We have all seen how each of the Province back three can be match-winners in their own right, none more so than Habana and despite some concerns over individual form, this contest has to go the way of the visitors.

So, on the final anlysis, the Sharks have better forwards and Province have better backs. It sure took a LONG time to confirm what everybody already knew. We’re going to make a bold prediction here and give this game to the Sharks, by 5 points, based purely on home ground advantage.


  • I am interested how the halfbacks went to the Sharks…

    Veteran Bok, plus veteran CC player against two greenhorns???

    Anyway, would not have expected anything other than a Sharks win!!!

  • Comment 1, posted at 29.10.10 15:24:00 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 1) : come on – you yourself have said you don’t rate de Waal as anything other than a kicker.

    For Province to win this game, they need to spread it past 10 and I don’t see de Waal as the right man for that job.

    also, Charl McLeod is hardly a greenhorn. He’s 27, FFS 🙂

  • Comment 2, posted at 29.10.10 15:26:07 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) :

    How many CC seasons does Charl have behind his name?

    And you are right, I do not rate De Waal as anything more than a kicker, but then again, what do you reckon will be decisive in the final, tries, or kicks?

  • Comment 3, posted at 29.10.10 15:29:00 by Morné Reply
  • Coenie Oosthuizen Rob? Isnt he from the Cheetahs?

  • Comment 4, posted at 29.10.10 15:31:27 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    Richard Ferguson
  • Locks are even imo. And loosies.

    Front Row no contest – Sharks hands down.

    Halfbacks – de Waal has won the odd currie cup and scored the odd point. 🙄 😈

  • Comment 5, posted at 29.10.10 15:31:47 by McLovin Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : i think its going to be by 6 :mrgreen:

  • Comment 6, posted at 29.10.10 15:33:30 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

  • And Rickey is conditioned like a shampoo model’s hair.

  • Comment 7, posted at 29.10.10 15:35:57 by McLovin Reply

  • I do agree with your prediction though. 😳 My brain anyway.

  • Comment 8, posted at 29.10.10 15:40:22 by McLovin Reply

  • I’m out, enjoy the rugby!

  • Comment 9, posted at 29.10.10 15:45:09 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 9) :

    Ta Morne!! You too!

  • Comment 10, posted at 29.10.10 15:49:08 by Queen Shark Ice Angel Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 4) : you won’t believe how often I confuse him with JC Kritzinger 🙂

  • Comment 11, posted at 29.10.10 15:54:16 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Morné (Comment 9) : cheers and good luck to your team (but more luck to mine!)

  • Comment 12, posted at 29.10.10 15:54:57 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Cheers Everyone!! Have a blast!!

    GO SHARKS!!!!!!!!!!!! 😀

  • Comment 13, posted at 29.10.10 15:56:22 by Queen Shark Ice Angel Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • @Morné (Comment 3) : this is McLeod’s 4th season of CC rugby, I believe

  • Comment 14, posted at 29.10.10 15:56:46 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • afternoon all

  • Comment 15, posted at 29.10.10 15:59:25 by stevo Reply

  • @stevo (Comment 15) : hello

    :mrgreen: GO SHARKS GO :mrgreen:

    Black and White is all that matters 🙂

  • Comment 16, posted at 29.10.10 16:00:29 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

  • @Queen Shark Ice Angel (Comment 13) : Cheers 😉

  • Comment 17, posted at 29.10.10 16:00:51 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

  • things a bit quiet here chaz??

  • Comment 18, posted at 29.10.10 16:02:46 by stevo Reply

  • so… for the Sharks, Beast, Bismarck, Burden, Hargreaves, Sykes, Bresler, Daniel, Kankowski,Lambie, Swanepoel and Mvovo have never played Currie Cup rugby for any other province. Jannie and Dries have played for Free State, Eugene for Griquas, Botes for the Pumas, McLeod for the Valke, Alberts, Kockott, Pretorius and Ludik for the Lions, Stef for Boland and Odwa for the Bulls

  • Comment 19, posted at 29.10.10 16:03:37 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @stevo (Comment 15) : hola!

  • Comment 20, posted at 29.10.10 16:03:57 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • long time rob…had to re register cause my old password would not work

  • Comment 21, posted at 29.10.10 16:05:03 by stevo Reply

  • On Boots and all they said that louw is injured.

  • Comment 22, posted at 29.10.10 16:07:11 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger
  • For Province, the only guys to have played elsewhere are Shimmy (Free State), Fondse (Bulls), van Zyl (Lions), Vermeulen (Pumas/Free State), Januarie (Lions), de Waal (Free State), Duvenage (Boland), Habana (Lions/Bulls) and Jantjes (Lions). The other 13 have only ever played for WP

  • Comment 23, posted at 29.10.10 16:15:52 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @stevo (Comment 21) : it has been too long… where’ve you been?

  • Comment 24, posted at 29.10.10 16:16:17 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Honey Badger (Comment 22) : which Louw?

  • Comment 25, posted at 29.10.10 16:16:31 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Francois I think.

  • Comment 26, posted at 29.10.10 16:19:53 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger
  • so – let’s look at schools.

    Beast – Peterhouse in Zim
    Bis and Jannie – Grey
    van Staden – Bredasdorp!
    Burds – Martizburg College
    Sykes – Marlow
    Hargs – DHS
    Bresler – DHS
    Keegs – Dale
    Willem – Monnas
    Hoff – St Andrews
    JB – Potch Gim
    Charl – Wonderboom
    Pat – Michaelhouse
    Rory – Selborne
    Petoors – Dinamika in Alberton(!!)
    Dries – Grey
    Stef – Swellendam Hoer
    Swannie – Noordkaap
    Odwa – Hudson Park
    Lwazi – Maria Louw
    Louis – EG Jansen

    a real mixed bacg, with Grey (3) and DHS (2) standing out

  • Comment 27, posted at 29.10.10 16:21:46 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 25) : Plum or ST said it’s a big loss for them,now I don’t know if they would have talked about pieter

  • Comment 28, posted at 29.10.10 16:23:15 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger
  • @stevo (Comment 18) : its true but i think its more like the nerves are getting the best of us tomorrow with the game i don’t think well be able to type and havn’t heard from u in a while out of town :mrgreen:

  • Comment 29, posted at 29.10.10 16:23:31 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 23) : Let’s not forget that Splinters (Shimange) also started out as one of those hookers waiting behind Smit at the Sharks before moving to the States.

  • Comment 30, posted at 29.10.10 16:24:25 by Butchie34 Reply
  • i,v been reading all the stories and comments and decided it was time to get back on line….so sharksboy is now replaced by stevo…lol

  • Comment 31, posted at 29.10.10 16:24:36 by stevo Reply

  • rob sent me my password for my old account but would not work so just decided to re register…

  • Comment 32, posted at 29.10.10 16:26:28 by stevo Reply

  • @Honey Badger (Comment 28) : Flou is a penalty machine anyway,so I hope he plays

  • Comment 33, posted at 29.10.10 16:28:56 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger
  • @stevo (Comment 32) : and the points that go with the old acc 😕 😉

  • Comment 34, posted at 29.10.10 16:30:02 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

  • for Province…

    Moller – Paarl Boys High
    Harris – Bastion (JHB)
    Kritzinger – Stellenberg
    Fourie – Pietersburg
    Shimmie- Rondebosch
    Fondse – Affies
    van Zyl – Rondebosch
    Steenkamp – Paarl Boys High
    Burger – Paarl Gim
    F Louw – Bishops
    Vermeulen – Neslpruit
    P Louw – Paarl Boys High
    Januarie – Weston
    Duvenage – Paarl Gim
    de Waal – Boland Landbou
    Cronje – Queens College
    de Villiers – Paarl Gim
    De Jongh – Hugenot
    Bosch – Ellisras (Pretoria)
    Habana – KES
    Aplon – Hawston High
    Jantjes – CBC Boksburg

    So Booishaai (3), Gimmies (2) and Rondebosch (2)

  • Comment 35, posted at 29.10.10 16:30:52 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • not sure hey…its been well over a year since i was on…maybe i get points for coming back?? lol

  • Comment 36, posted at 29.10.10 16:31:51 by stevo Reply

  • @Butchie34 (Comment 30) : true… did he ever play senior rugga for the Sharks, though? I don’t think so,

    In fact, what’s remarkable about these two teams is that there isn’t a single player in either who has represented the other in senior rugby! Closest are Shimmie and McLeod, who both played junior/vodacom cup for the other team

  • Comment 37, posted at 29.10.10 16:34:01 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @stevo (Comment 31) : don’t forget to touch ur arrow by ur name to comment 😉

  • Comment 38, posted at 29.10.10 16:35:42 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

  • ok cool thanks

  • Comment 39, posted at 29.10.10 16:52:54 by stevo Reply

  • The Day Has Come!

  • Comment 40, posted at 30.10.10 07:36:30 by Original Pierre Reply
    Original Pierre
  • Good luck to our Sharks.

    Superb weather at the moment in Durbs too. Only blue sky and hardly any wind. Hope it stays like this for the final later today.


  • Comment 41, posted at 30.10.10 09:15:33 by Puma Reply

  • Come on!!!!!!can the game just start.I have a meeting from 12-4 thats going to be like FOREVA.

  • Comment 42, posted at 30.10.10 09:30:05 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger

Add Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.