Western Province leave it late as Sharks miss out


Robert du Preez kicked a last-gasp penalty as Western Province snuck into the Currie Cup semi-finals courtesy of a 30-28 victory over Boland Cavaliers.

The hosts trailed by a point with less than two minutes remaining at Newlands, but Du Preez kept his nerve to split the posts and seal a third-placed finish for Western Province in the Premier Division table.

It had looked set to be a comfortable outing for the home side as they overcame an early Boland try to lead 17-7 at the interval.

However, the visitors crossed three times early in the second half to turn the match on its head and move 28-20 in front.

David Ribbans powered over to reduce the deficit with seven minutes left and, after adding the conversion, Du Preez made himself the hero by taking his match tally to 15 points.

That late penalty pushed the Sharks out of the top four, with the KwaZulu-Natal outfit having earlier lost to defending champions the Golden Lions, who clinched the fourth semi-final spot.

The Lions found themselves 10-0 down at the break but recovered through three second-half tries to come away with a 28-16 triumph.

Table-toppers the Free State Cheetahs await the Lions in the semi-finals, while Western Province travel to Pretoria to take on the Blue Bulls.

In the day's other match, hooker Frankie Herne scored a hat-trick as the Pumas beat the Eastern Province Kings 38-30.