Currie Cup 2012: Final preview and prediction

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks, WP on 25 Oct 2012 at 13:36
Tagged with : ,

So it all comes down to this… after 30 regular-season games and two semi-finals, there is only one match left to play in the 2012 Currie Cup Premier Division and it’s the biggest one of all. The Currie Cup Final between the Sharks and Western Province.

John Plumtree has perhaps gambled a little in team selection by making four changes to the starting fifteen that dispatched the Blue Bulls – with some ease – last week. Each of the guys he has brought back, though, has experience in previous finals and in the case of Beast Mtawarira and Willem Alberts, are current Springbok starters. The changes mean that while the match 22 remains very much the same, the balance between strength of the starting fifteen and that of the bench has shifted a little and while the likes of Kyle Cooper and Jandre Marais are form players, they’re perhaps not as formidable on the bench as the likes of Craig Burden, Mtawarira, Alberts or Steven Sykes.

That said, you cannot blame the Sharks coach for picking the strongest team he has available to him for this game and on paper alone, the combination in black and white appears to easily have the beating of Allister Coetzee’s Western Province side, struggling a little for experience given their nightmarish injury toll this season. Rugby is never played on paper, though and players like Steven Kitshoff, Even Etzebeth, Deon Fourie and Duane Vermeulen have been punching hard all season and will continue to do so up front for Province. The Sharks will need to be on top of their game amongst the forwards in order to provide Pat Lambie a platform on which to build a dominant performance.

The battle of the backlines should be superb to watch, with X-factor aplenty in both line-ups. Province have gambled on the untried Damian de Allende at inside centre, but apart from him, both back divisions have a settled and dangerous look, with the match ups in the back three, in particular, a mouth-watering prospect. In Bryan Habana and Gio Aplon, the visitors have a pair of players who have shown the ability to rip Sharks’ defences to shreds in the past. In black and white, though, JP Pietersen, Lwazi Mvovo and particularly Louis Ludik will be keen to show that they are no slouches themselves in the attacking stakes.

The signs here do point to a Sharks victory, though, since the home side have better combinations in the front row, at halfback and at loose forward than their visitors can boast. Add to that the home ground advantage factor and slightly better form going into the game, and we think the Sharks will emerge victorious, by around 8 points.

Sharks: 15 Louis Ludik, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Tim Whitehead, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Pat Lambie, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Keegan Daniel (captain), 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Anton Bresler, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Craig Burden, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Wiehahn Herbst, 18 Jandre Marais, 19 Jean Deysel, 20 Charl McLeod, 21 Meyer Bosman, 22 Odwa Ndungane.

Western Province: 15 Gio Aplon, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Don Armand, 6 Deon Fourie (captain), 5 De Kock Steenkamp, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Deon Carstens, 17 Brok Harris, 18 Wilhelm van der Sluys, 19 Jebb Sinclair, 20 Louis Schreuder, 21 Marcel Brache, 22 Joe Pietersen.


  • Cant take it anymore!! The week before any finals game either the Sharks or the Boks are involved in is a nightmare! COME ON GAME DAY!

  • Comment 1, posted at 25.10.12 13:59:06 by Die Kriek Reply
  • Go Sharks!! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 2, posted at 25.10.12 13:59:43 by Pokkel Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
  • Sharks 32 wp 23 is what I predict

  • Comment 3, posted at 25.10.12 14:28:18 by juba_fan Reply

  • Can’t wait for Game Day ๐Ÿ˜ก Go Sharks :mrgreen:

  • Comment 4, posted at 25.10.12 14:32:43 by Jr88 Reply

  • 18-12….Thats my score if its wet…somewhat bigger if its dry in the region of 27 – 13.

  • Comment 5, posted at 25.10.12 14:37:58 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • WeatherSA has 99% chance of rain in Durban on Saturday – so chances are high that we will get a close slugfest of a game concluded on penalties

  • Comment 6, posted at 25.10.12 14:57:51 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 6) : I have it as 30%, but I clicked on Durban region.

  • Comment 7, posted at 25.10.12 15:14:52 by war1 Reply
  • @war1 (Comment 7) : Weather 24 has it as 37% chance.

  • Comment 8, posted at 25.10.12 15:15:32 by war1 Reply
  • Go Sharks. I bought a Sharks jersey just to piss of my province roommate.

  • Comment 9, posted at 25.10.12 15:26:29 by Mutley Reply
  • @war1 (Comment 7) : I tried Durban Harbour – assumes that is closest to Kings Park area

  • Comment 10, posted at 25.10.12 15:30:55 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 10) : nah – the harbour is guaranteed to always be wetter

  • Comment 11, posted at 25.10.12 15:38:17 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 10) : I just got the weather sa app. It says 97% chance of rain for Durban on Saturday but less than 10mm. By all accounts it seems like there will be a few showers in the morning. I’m not expecting as wet a game as seems to be expected but you never know on the coast. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Comment 12, posted at 25.10.12 15:39:06 by war1 Reply
  • @robdylan (Comment 11) : :mrgreen: ๐Ÿ˜†

  • Comment 13, posted at 25.10.12 15:40:26 by war1 Reply
  • @war1 (Comment 12) : Anyway it is still 2 days away – lot of time in the context of SA weather predictions – especially near the coast

  • Comment 14, posted at 25.10.12 15:41:56 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @war1 (Comment 12) : “From me, War1 the Sharksworld weather man, back to you in the studio. Good night stay dry” ๐Ÿ˜†

  • Comment 15, posted at 25.10.12 15:45:00 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • The Sharks shouldn’t be complacent, but the reality is that they have the better team and home advantage.

    This is theirs to lose. Yet so was the final last year.

  • Comment 16, posted at 25.10.12 15:46:08 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • @Ice (Comment 15) : Nice one.

  • Comment 17, posted at 25.10.12 15:47:51 by war1 Reply
  • @Big Fish (Comment 16) : We didn’t have home ground advantage last year. That is a massive difference for me. But your point is still valid.

  • Comment 18, posted at 25.10.12 15:48:53 by war1 Reply
  • @Big Fish (Comment 16) : Sharks can’t lose, it is HIGHLY improbable!

  • Comment 19, posted at 25.10.12 15:56:06 by Megatron Reply

  • @Megatron (Comment 19) : You are being too deliberate Megs, why do you want us to lose so bad? You know what SW is like after we lose a final

  • Comment 20, posted at 25.10.12 16:13:13 by Die Kriek Reply

  • @Die Kriek (Comment 20) : I’m just surprised at how you okes are kak bang or rather apprehensive even when the Odds are STACKED in your favour! WP haven’t won JACK in ages, they have none of their experienced Bokke in the mix, they have a ROOKIE/ U21 @ 12, their other hooker is playing OPENSIDE, you’ve beaten them FOUR times out of five this season, you’re at HOME, you have LAMBIE ๐Ÿ˜† :mrgreen:

    WTF are you being bangbroeke about?

  • Comment 21, posted at 25.10.12 17:05:13 by Megatron Reply

  • @Megatron (Comment 21) : Agreed. We`ll take this by around 6 – 9 . . .

    Just Bring It! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 22, posted at 25.10.12 17:42:28 by Original Pierre Reply
    Original Pierre
  • Megatron
    I have to agree with you. There’s very little chance of a WP win. The Sharks must really play terrible rugby to not beat us. In fact, I’d go as far as saying the only way WP will win is if the Sharks play at our ‘lower’ level. ๐Ÿ™

  • Comment 23, posted at 25.10.12 18:38:09 by wpw Reply
  • @Mutley (Comment 9) : hope you put it too good use next year

  • Comment 24, posted at 25.10.12 18:41:31 by BR Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
  • I think wet weather will suite the Sharks.

    Wet weather always suite the stronger pack, and that was evident in the Lions/WP semi, only once the rain stopped that WP was able to fight back and ended up winning the game.

  • Comment 25, posted at 25.10.12 19:04:08 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • I think Megatron is setting us up for a fall – it’s something the Ozzies are quite good at, talking the opposition up just to knock them off their pedestal.

    The one time we were supposedly this assured of a win was in 2008 SR vs. the tjietas, we were on some winning streak of note and they were on their typical losing streak.

    They hammered us 20something – 6 (can’t exactly remember the score – but we were horribly outgunned)

    Even in last year’s final, we were supposed to win with all our Springboks etc. and we we man-shamed by an inexperienced Lions team.

    WP will be brimming with confidence after snatching that oh-so-late-win against the Lions, and they are starving for some genuine silverware.

  • Comment 26, posted at 25.10.12 19:10:04 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • Sharks should win, they should be hungry after losing in super 15 final.

  • Comment 27, posted at 25.10.12 21:55:58 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 26) : dude, MAN UP!!!

    back your boytjies to the hilt, none of this pussyfooting around…

    plumtree wouldn’t allow most of you anywhere near his changeroom as you would just stutter something about WP being more G-ed up than your sharks… ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Comment 28, posted at 25.10.12 22:51:29 by Megatron Reply

  • Shaaaaarks!!!! By 17 ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Comment 29, posted at 26.10.12 07:31:17 by Franshark Reply
  • Flight booked – check
    Game ticket – check
    Sharks to win – check

  • Comment 30, posted at 26.10.12 07:35:36 by Bump Reply

  • Man, I’m excited about the game, but also saddened. This is likely to be the last quality rugby we see for the year. After this we have to grit our teeth for more Bok bumbling under Heyneke “Lion Colon” Meyer’s guiding hand ๐Ÿ™

  • Comment 31, posted at 26.10.12 07:40:37 by Culling Song Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
    Culling Song
  • @Megatron (Comment 28) : I enjoy going to the tank, and have been their in a torrential downpour and survived it.

    But I just hate the fact that I spend that much time and money getting to the game and back, and still have to watch the recorded game at home to see what exactly happened in the game. That sad outdated little stadium screen is absolute rubbish.

    If they want better attendance at these stadiums, they need to make it more enjoyable than staying at home – currently it is not.

    With the HD screens most people are using at home, the sporting stadiums will have to up their game.

    Have a look at the big screens being installed at the new Dallas Cowboys stadium, now that beats anything available for home use, and that will attract the big crowds.

  • Comment 32, posted at 26.10.12 07:41:09 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 32) : they also have to somehow get commentary available on audio to radio like the tv commentary. Radio 2000 doesn’t always help for multiple languages.

  • Comment 33, posted at 26.10.12 07:49:23 by Dunx Reply

  • I have Sharks by 9.

  • Comment 34, posted at 26.10.12 08:16:09 by JarsonX Reply
    Competition WinnerCompetition WinnerCompetition Winner
  • Unless the wheels really come off the bus, the Sharks will take this one. I think the only way the wheels can come off is if the Sharks loose this game upstairs – either freeze up from the weight of expectation or have a too lackadaisical approach to the game. Being a final the risk of the first is the one to worry about.

    The margin won’t be big – conditions are going to be wet. Sounds more like light rain in the morning though. So probably more like last weeks Bulls’ game and not the previous game against the Bulls.

  • Comment 35, posted at 26.10.12 08:27:28 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Culling Song (Comment 31) : “sigh” Agree..

  • Comment 36, posted at 26.10.12 08:33:31 by Franshark Reply
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 32) :

    Agreed, but there is nothing to beat the atmosphere at a Kings Park final.

  • Comment 37, posted at 26.10.12 08:35:30 by Bump Reply

  • Sharks to take this!

  • Comment 38, posted at 26.10.12 08:43:19 by Pokkel Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
  • Ok, so finally the Cape media is getting on the bandwagon.
    Robbie Fleck reckons de Allende was partly picked because they (Province) know Tim Whiteheads game so well and that he, de Allende, will have to unsettle Lambie and Whitehead.
    Secondly, Fleckie promised to take the CC trophy into the Cape Talk studios after they (WP) had drunk beer out of it.

  • Comment 39, posted at 26.10.12 08:47:53 by Salmonoid Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • Corne Krige, hopes that WP win the damn thing so that come finals time people will stop phoning him, as the last captain to win a meaningful trophy in the Cape, for interviews. ๐Ÿ˜†

    He also draws parallels between this years team an his winning team in that they were heavily beaten by the Sharks in the pool stages, had a poor scrum and were written off as no hopers to actually win it. He reckons they came up with a plan and suggested that the current game breakers must back themselves to punish any wayward kicks.

  • Comment 40, posted at 26.10.12 09:00:14 by Salmonoid Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • Guys the Sharks will have to watch closely is:

    Eben Ysterbeth
    Garden Gnome Captain
    Duane Vermeulen
    Nic Groom (waaaaaay better than Schreuder and Duvenhage)
    Bryan Habana
    Juan De Jongh
    Gio Aplon
    Driving Maul

    That’s still an imposing list of quality players able to make something out of nothing.

  • Comment 41, posted at 26.10.12 09:03:36 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @Salmonoid (Comment 40) : oh yeah, hates an interview, does Rent-a-Quote Krige ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Comment 42, posted at 26.10.12 09:59:39 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Morning all, looks like rain in the morning will clear by 11 or 12. No rain is expected during the game… Lets see if Windguru gets it right!

    Come on the SHARKS!

  • Comment 43, posted at 26.10.12 10:17:54 by MikeVS Reply

  • His predictions are becoming quiete tempered these days – well since the Super rugby semi anyway.

  • Comment 44, posted at 26.10.12 10:18:23 by Salmonoid Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 40) : Salmonoid, where you watching the game?

  • Comment 45, posted at 26.10.12 10:18:45 by MikeVS Reply

  • Hi Mike, Im working and it looks like it will be a long day so most likely at home. Are you going to the supporters club?

  • Comment 46, posted at 26.10.12 10:27:43 by Salmonoid Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 46) : Ah no man! hope you can catch the rugga at least. Yes going to try go the Club. It is going to be packed though so will have to see how things go with the baby…

    Can’t wait for tomorrow!

  • Comment 47, posted at 26.10.12 10:30:25 by MikeVS Reply

  • @Salmonoid (Comment 40) : Yes and we should have won in 2001, we were way better on paper then too!

    Just like then, I really won’t be happy if we throw this game away, or let WP take this game with sly tricks.

    We’re better than that and should take this game, but we know from experience that it doesn’t always just happen like that.

  • Comment 48, posted at 26.10.12 11:07:24 by Letgo Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @Letgo (Comment 48) : Man I remember how bummed I felt in that game, it was painful watching it all unfolding. I dont need that again.

  • Comment 49, posted at 26.10.12 11:11:46 by Salmonoid Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 49) : That’s why I’m never confident before a final.

    I know the guys are better, but I also know that it just doesn’t matter and that finals are a monster that can take any team out and if you’re not ready to bring your absolute best you won’t go home happy!

  • Comment 50, posted at 26.10.12 11:32:53 by Letgo Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author

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