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Ken Borland

WP desperate not to miss out on semifinals after a most average season 0

Posted on September 13, 2021 by Ken

Western Province have endured a most average season and, unless they beat the Sharks in Durban on Saturday, they will miss out on the Currie Cup semi-finals for only the second time since 2008. And Sharks coach Sean Everitt foresees a desperate visiting team that will play more rugby than usual.

The problem with that is that Durbanites are expecting to see squalls of rain sweeping in from the sea and the Sharks have made using their kicking game to force teams deep into their own territory something of an art form.

“Western Province are a proud franchise and they won’t be happy with where they are on the log. They will see the opportunity to get five points, I’m sure they will come to Kings Park and give it their all and play more rugby than usual. Our kicking game will certainly help us because the conditions Durban is expecting will bring a lot of rain and gale-force winds.

“So we are very happy to have Curwin Bosch back and we will have another look at him at fullback, where he played very well against Griquas when we played them at Kings Park. He’s certainly dying to play again and that big boot of his will definitely be very useful for us,” Everitt said this week.

The Sharks lost that match to Griquas because they failed to grab their scoring opportunities and the Northern Cape team have since moved to third on the log with their thumping of Western Province last weekend, giving them wins home and away against the team that has won the Currie Cup more than any other (34 times).

The match between Griquas and the Pumas in Kimberley on Saturday afternoon will be a feast of celebration for the winners as they will be assured of a semi-final place. The losers of this 2.30pm clash will have to wait until after dinner on Saturday night to see if Western Province can upstage the Sharks and sneak past them into the knockout round.

In between those games, the Bulls host the Free State Cheetahs at Loftus Versfeld. Having devoured the Pumas pack in the set-pieces, which was crucial as the Bulls were not dominant in any other area, Jake White’s young pack will be eager to stamp their mark again and get the win that seals first place on the final log.

“I do not think the Pumas have been dominated at set-piece before this season like they were by the Bulls, which was a great boost for us. We generally have quite a young pack, only Arno Botha is older than 25, and their performances have given us massive confidence. Credit to forwards coach Russell Winter, who has done a fantastic job getting that pack going.

“Mornay Smith at tighthead is one of the most improved players we’ve had and I’m very happy to have Jacques du Plessis covering lock and flank. Ruan Combrinck is not a bad replacement either, he’s a Springbok who has played in Super Rugby finals. Although he has not played for a while, I’ve seen enough in the small time he’s been with us to know he has rugby in him,” White said on Friday.

Van Zyl warns brilliant win over Sharks is worth nothing if Bulls don’t build on it 0

Posted on October 28, 2020 by Ken

Bulls scrumhalf Ivan van Zyl has warned that their brilliant victory over the Sharks is worth nothing unless they build on it and maintain that momentum in their huge games coming up against the Stormers in Pretoria on Saturday and versus the Lions at Ellis Park the following weekend.

Top spot on the log is their’s at the moment, but the Bulls will need to keep winning to hold off the thus far unbeaten Free State Cheetahs and Stormers, who have won both their matches, because Jake White’s team then have a bye.

“As a team we took a lot of confidence from the Sharks game and that performance couldn’t have come at a better time. Before that we had been a bit stop-start, we didn’t have much flow in our first two games. Every game is important but now it’s really important that we build on that display and move forward, otherwise that win won’t help us.

“We have a couple of massive games coming up, but at least we were more clinical at the right times, there was better decision-making and we identified space better. Better decisions lead to better play, and this time we rounded off our chances. Coach Jake is very good at making sure that it is all about getting the team to win and we all understand our roles every week,” Van Zyl said.

While the Bulls were much more accurate with ball in hand, and also off the boot, their defence was also highly impressive against the Sharks as they conceded just one try.

“We’re very happy with our defence and the combination of scoring six tries and just conceding one is massive for us. The more consistent we are in our defence, the more opportunities we’ll have to win, so it’s something we continue to work on and against the Stormers we’ll come up against different players with different skill-sets. But we take a lot of confidence from the defensive effort against the Sharks.

“Joey Mongalo has been great for us as defence coach, he has great energy and clearly loves what he does, he’s passionate about defence and that rubs off on the team. We are eager to get better every week. The basics of our defensive system haven’t changed that much, but there’s a new energy,” Van Zyl said.

Moroe plot delayed as CSA backtrack on Govender statement 0

Posted on September 11, 2020 by Ken

It was an interesting day for CEOs of Cricket South Africa both past and present on Tuesday as the fired Thabang Moroe saw his plot to return to office delayed in the Labour Court and the acting incumbent Kugandrie Govender suffered the embarrassment of the organisation backtracking on her statement that White consultants would no longer be used unless there were exceptional circumstances.

Moroe approached the Labour Court on Tuesday to have his dismissal set aside because he believes the disciplinary process was unlawful, but he first of all had to convince the court that his application was urgent. CSA’s lawyers argued that the matter was not urgent and the court reserved judgement as to whether the matter should be held urgently or not. The court is expected to make its decision during the week.

Govender stated last week in a text message to Sport24 that following a meeting with the minister of sport Nathi Mthethwa, CSA “are now required to enforce Black consultants only until such time as the numbers are moving in the right direction and we can then revise this. It’s an internal measure to enforce that the change that should have happened organically over the years but didn’t, does actually now happen”.

The announcement created a storm of protest, with civil rights lobby group AfriForum threatening legal action against CSA and the Institute for Race Relations writing to the International Cricket Council to report the organisation for failing to respect the governing body’s constitution in terms of racial discrimination and political interference.

CSA issued a statement on Tuesday saying they were saddened by the media reports around their use of consultants. They called the stories “factually incorrect” even though they were quoting their own CEO verbatim.

“CSA has not taken and will not take a decision to work exclusively with Black consultants. The media reports around the statements made by our Acting Chief Executive are not a correct reflection of the sentiment that CSA had sought to convey. CSA therefore reiterates that it does not have a policy of excluding any racial grouping.

“As part of our corporate business model, CSA has adopted and subscribes to the country’s BBBEE Act and Affirmative Action policy. This means CSA has a moral and legal obligation to implement these two prescripts, while still embracing the need for all South Africans to live their cricketing dreams regardless of background, culture or ethnicity, and this includes the services that we procure from external service providers,” their statement said.

CSA went on to say transformation is a pillar for the organisation.

“It is, therefore, imperative that we constantly remind ourselves of its [transformation] importance in the way in which we conduct our business. As a democratic and non-racial institution, CSA is well aware of the need to provide equality and quality of opportunity to all and we do also emphasise that this has to be seen in the context of our unhappy history that for more than a century deprived the majority of our population from living their cricket dreams both on the field of play and in many other areas.”

The change of stance by CSA will now obviously attract the attention of Minister Mthethwa, who has been critical of the number of White faces in prominent positions at CSA. It is believed using exclusively Black consultants unless there are none available at the level required in order to keep the Proteas at the top end of the world rankings is exactly what CSA promised Mthethwa at their meeting last week.

It is also a loss of face for Govender, whose meteoric rise at CSA saw her appointed acting CEO on August 19 after Jacques Faul stepped down.

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    Philemon 1:7 – “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.”

    “Every disciple of Jesus has a capacity for love. The most effective way to serve the Master is to share his love with others. Love can comfort, save the lost, and offer hope to those who need it. It can break down barriers, build bridges, establish relationships and heal wounds.” – A Shelter From The Storm, Solly Ozrovech

    If there’s a frustrating vacuum in your spiritual life and you fervently desire to serve the Lord but don’t know how you’re meant to do that, then start by loving others in his name.


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