Cheetahs 53, Kings 14


UPDATE: The Kings will have to beat the CheetAhs by 40 points and a bonus try in PE to gain promotion to the CC.

THE Eastern Province Kings will travel to Bloemfontein for Friday’s night’s crucial Absa Currie Cup promotion-relegation first-leg match against the Toyota Free State Cheetahs knowing that an unbeaten season thus far, which includes winning the First Division title, will count for nothing should they be unable to win a place in the Premier Division for 2013

The two-legged series kicks off at the Free State Stadium before the Cheetahs head off to Nelson Mandela Bay in Port Elizabeth for the return leg next Friday night.

The Kings’ participation in the promotion-relegation series was already assured before their 26-25 victory over the Ford Pumas in last week’s First Division final, thanks to Alan Solomons’ men having topped the log at the conclusion of the round-robin matches.

The Cheetahs find themselves playing for their Premier Division lives after finishing bottom of the six-team log with just three wins from their 10 matches.

After completion of the promotion-relegation series, the team with the most log points accumulated during these two matches will play in the Premier Division next year.

In the event of an equal number of log points, the winner will be determined as follows:

a) the best netto points difference, i.e. points for minus points against, and if equal;

b) the team who scored the most tries, and if equal;

c) the status quo will remain.

Injuries have meanwhile forced both sides to change key personnel for Friday’s match, with EP Kings lock and skipper Darron Nell, veteran centre Tiger Mangweni and prop Schalk Ferreira all ruled out. Centre Wayne Stevens takes over the captaincy.

Ross Geldenhuys will start at tighthead for the Cheetahs in the absence of Springbok prop Coenie Oosthuizen, who is out for the rest of the year with a back injury.


Toyota Free State Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Nico Scheepers, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Andries Strauss, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Sias Ebersohn, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Phillip van der Walt, 7 Pieter Labuschagne, 6 Hendro Scholtz, 5 Izak van der Merwe, 4 Francois Uys, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Adriaan Strauss (capt.), 1 Marcel van der Merwe. Replacements: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Schalk van der Merwe, 18 Carl Wegner, 19 Davon Raubenheimer, 20 Tewis du Bruyn, 21 Phillip Snyman, 22 Ryno Benjamin.

Eastern Province Kings: 15 SP Marais, 14 Paul Perez, 13 Wayne Stevens (capt.), 12 Shane Gates, 11 Marcello Sampson, 10 Wesley Dunlop, 9 Falie Oelschig, 8 Cornell du Preez, 7 Wimpie van der Walt, 6 Devin Oosthuizen, 5 David Bullbring, 4 Rynier Bernado, 3 Clint Newland, Hannes Franklin, 1 Jaco Engels. Replacements: 16 Frank Herne, 17 Andre Schlechter, 18 Wayne van Heerden, 19 Mpho Mbiyozo, 20 Scott Mathie, 21 George Whitehead, 22 Michael Killian.

Leopards flyhalf André Pretorius finished the season as the leading First Division point-scorer, with 166 points made up of 47 conversions, 21 penalties and 3 drop goals. Finishing behind Pretorius in second place was 162 is Ford Pumas flyhalf JC Roos, with EP Kings flyhalf George Whitehead finishing third with 142.

Leopards wing Allister Kettledas finished the competition on top of the try-scoring table with 14 touchdowns. Behind him in second place was EP Kings eighthman Luke Watson with 13, with Ford Pumas centre JW Jonker third on 11.

This weekend’s fixture – First Leg of Promotion-Relegation series:

Toyota Free State Cheetahs vs Eastern Province Kings

Date: Friday, 19 October

Kickoff: 19h10

Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein

Referee: Jonathan Kaplan

Assistants: Lesego Legoete, Rasta Rasivhenge

Television Match Official: Gerrie Coetzee

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  1. Well, the Kings will have to buy a
    lot of players for the SS series.
    Totally outclassed in every department.

    And strange enough I can’t remember
    seeing an African black in the EP
    side – the so called cradle of
    black rugby.

  2. LOL you guys, Samoa a suburb of PE indeed! However, the result also shows the gulf between the divisions the respective teams play in, something that SARFU should worry about more than all this politicking they are doing.

    It also shows just how good the Cheetahs are. Their S15 team received big wraps on their tour downunder for their successes and near victories playing their adventurous style of rugby. It’s enough to make a Stormers supporter weep and long for the days of the du Plessis brothers, Peter Whipp and Jannie Engelbrecht.

  3. Du plessisse was ook maar strooi by tye – veral afkop Michael. Maar niks so mooi soos Carel se jinx op volspoed nie – soos sy laaste drie in sy laaste game vir Province!!

  4. What was the game like though? Was it good rugby that won the day? In NZ we had a fascinating semi final in the ITM Championship game between Otago and the Tasman Makos. Otago won 41-34 in a hard game with a host of new name players. No DavidS, NZ rugby is not going to the dogs and this is the same Otago that has risen from the ashes of the financial debacle that many poked fingers at

  5. Reply to out wide @ 11:53 pm:

    I fully enjoyed the game. Kings had little posession,
    but used it well at times.
    The move I’ll remember is Raymond Rhule outstripping
    the defence on the outside, then jinking inside
    before passing the ball for a try.
    This guy has raw speed!

    PS. Apart from various sound problems, this game
    was TV directed by a man who knows the game.
    They should model all their directors on him.

  6. This game underlined to huge difference in CC A and 1st Division.

    Most of the Kings players showed that they are not good enough for CC A Division, not to even mention SuperRugby.

    SP Marais is kak, not even Any Capistanio know where he matriculated…

  7. Well I am glad about this result, regardleSS of my belief that FrEEState rugby will have to change a lot of management persoNNel in order to raise any trophy sOOn!

    Making the CC semi’s maybe is enough to tick the boxes, but surely are our administrators reaLLy haPPy when we are a “fEEder” union, albeit one with some- atleast sometimes- some serious bite!