Plenty upsets in Vodacom Cup

SWD, Border, Blue Bulls and defending champions Western Province are yet to record a victory in this year’s Vodacom Cup, which has enjoyed a topsy turvy start.

Sitting pretty at the top of the respective sections are the Pumas, who edged the Blue Bulls in a thriller for their second successive victory, while The Sharks XV were also on the road to edge out Western Province in a similarly tense affair.

EP, Boland and Pampas XV also had second round wins – to add to opening day draws – to preserve their unbeaten records.

The Sharks XV and Western Province teams were on the receiving end of countless penalties and a red and yellow card for ill-discipline. Province finished the game with 13 players on the park and the Sharks with 14 as the latter edged to a 24-23 victory.

Riaan Viljoen, veteran fullback of the Sharks, scored the winning try for the visitors with his flyhalf Fred Zeilinga keeping a cool head to convert in the dying seconds of the game to give his side the one-point win.

It took a similarly last-gasp penalty from the Pumas to edge past the Vodacom Blue Bulls 44-42 on the Loftus Versfeld B field in Pretoria on Saturday.

The Pumas had seemingly been in control of the match as they stretched their lead to 41-23 with 13 minutes left to play. But two tries for the Blue Bulls through replacement forward Roelof Smit and left wing Sampie Mastriet narrowed the gap to 41-37 with seven minutes left to play and the hosts finally looked to have sealed a magnificent fightback when right wing Travis Ismaiel nipped over for an unconverted try with one minute left to play. However, flyhalf Tony Janties crucially missed with his conversion attempt.

The Blue Bulls held a 42-41 lead but with the hooter having already sounded Pumas replacement flyhalf Carl Bezuidenhout stepped up to slot the winning penalty to seal the nail-biting win.

It was another tough day at the office for the Limpopo Blue Bulls whio conceded the most points and biggest defeat in the 15-year history of the competition. The 113 points and 110-point win by the Leopards surpassed the 110-17 beating the Weltwitschias suffered at the hands of EP in 2001.

The 17 tries scored by the Leopards was also a new competition record with hat-tricks from Ian Heyns (4) and Rhyk Welgemoed while former Springbok flyhalf Andre Pretorius kicked a record 14 conversions.

All the scorers:

Western Province 23 (9) Sharks 24 (14)

Western Province – Tries: Michael van der Spuy, Rayn Smid. Conversions: Gary Van Aswegen (2). Penalties: Van Aswegen (2). Drop goal: Van Aswegen.

Sharks – Tries: S’bura Sithole, Riaan Viljoen, Sizo Maseko. Conversions: Zeilinga (3). Penalty: Zeilinga.

Griffons 12 (0) Griquas 26 (12)

Griffins – Tries: Colin Herbert, Japie Nel. Conversion: Hansie Graaff.

Griquas – Tries: Justin Downey, Leon Karemaker, Marnus Schoeman, Francois Brummer. Conversions: Francois Brummer.

Bulldogs 22 (10) Eastern Province 30 (22)

Bulldogs – Tries: Joe Seerane, Sinovuyo Nyoka. Conversions: Karlo Aspeling. Penalty: Aspeling.

EP – Tries: Devin Oosthuizen, Paul Schoeman, Siviwe Soyizwapi, Virgile Lacombe. Conversions: Wesley Dunlop (2). Penalties: Scott van Breda, Dunlop.

Blue Bulls 42 (23) Pumas 44 (31)

Blue Bulls – Tries: Dries Swanepoel (2), Roelof Smit, Sampie Mastriet, Travis Ismaiel. Conversions: Tony Jantjies (4). Penalties: Jantjies (3).

Pumas – Tries: Ivann Espag, Marius Coetzer, Renaldo Bothma, Rosko Specman, Stefan Watermeyer, Vincent Koch. Conversions: Tiaan Marx (4), Carl Bezuidenhout. Penalty: Marx.

Free State XV 23 (11), Boland 27 (14)

Free State: Tries: Tewis de Bruyn, Joubert Engelbrecht, Ludwig Erasmus Conversions: De Bruyn (1) Penalties: De Bruyn (2)

Boland: Tries: Thor Halvorsen (2), Tythan Adams Conversions: Ricardo Croy (2), Garth April (1) Penalties: R Croy (2)Tries: Conversions: Penalties:

SWD 17 (7) Pampas 22 (17)

SWD – Tries: Alshaun Bock, Lyndon Hartnick; Conversions: Elric van Vuuren (2); Penalties: Van Vuuren

Pampas – Tries: Penalty Try, Tomas Cubelli, Manuel Montero; Conversions: Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias (2); Penalty: Iglesias

Leopards 113 (47), Limpopo Blue Bulls 3 (3)

Leopards– Tries: Jaques Vermaak (2), Adriaan Engelbrecht (2), Danie Dames, Ian Heyns (4), Edmar Marais (2), Rhyk Welgemoed (3), Andre Pretorius, Johan Smith, Malherbe Swart; Conversions: Pretorius (14).

Limpopo Blue Bulls – Penalty: Bronwyn Craill.

Valke 27 (14) Golden Lions 22 (17)

Valke – Tries: Nico Engelbrecht  (2), Kyle Hendricks. Conversions: Wesley Roberts (3). Penalties: Jaun Kotze (2).

Lions – Tries: Ashlon Davids, Chris Newman, Henri Boshoff, Van Zyl Botha. Conversion: Hanco Deale.