Western Province claimed their 34th Currie Cup Trophy on 28 October when they beat their coastal rivals, the Cell C Sharks, 21 – 33 at Growthpoint Kings Park Durban.
On what was a sunny Saturday with three finals played in Durban, we saw the junior teams go head to head as the Free State Cheetahs U19 faced off against the Golden Lions U19, and the Blue Bulls U21 went toe to toe with Western Province U21. Those preceded the massive clash between the Cell C Sharks and Western Province in the Premier Final.
The final had all the drama one could wish for. The in-form team, the Cell C Sharks, who had an impressive 10-match winning streak ended by Western Province on the last round stage of the competition, were still the favourites with home-ground advantage. Along with that, it was built as a ‘family affair’ with the Sharks head coach, Robert du Preez, selecting his twin sons in the starting 15 facing his other son, also Robert du Preez, who played No. 10 for Western Province. Three sons and a father as the head coach – one Robert would lift the trophy in the end.
The match itself proved to be quite a humdinger in the first half. Both teams went pound for pound as the Sharks seemed to have the upper hand after the first 40 minutes. Western Province had other ideas as they came out firing in the second half and kept the Cell C Sharks scoreless for the rest of the match, scoring 18 unanswered points. Building on their strong set-piece, WP out-muscled the Sharks at scrum time to build the foundation for attack as they played to their strengths to bring home another title.
For the second straight year, both finalists used STATS as their official data provider, and three of the four semifinalists use STATS data, STATS GameLens and STATS Rugby Portal.
STATS would like to congratulate the Cell C Sharks on making the final and Western Province for claiming their record-breaking 34th Currie Cup Trophy.