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Weekly Sports Wrap

Presented by sports journalist Guy Mortimer, in this section you will find weekly articles about South African sporting events both past and future. Combining his two passions, sport and writing, Guy reports on “the week that was” and advises on what sporting events we should be watching in the weeks to come.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Weekly Sports Wrap, South African sports news – 28 September

Franco van der Merwe

Franco van der Merwe

Lions keep Currie Cup hopes alive in six-try thriller
The Lions continued their recent run of good form in this year’s Absa Currie Cup to run out narrow 22-20 winners over log leaders the Sharks at Coca-Cola Park Stadium in Johannesburg on Saturday evening. Lions captain Franco van der Merwe (pictured) scored a 79th minute try to bring the sides level and flyhalf Elton Jantjies made no mistake with the conversion to give the Lions their seventh win of the season from 12 starts.

Some will consider the Lions fortunate to have emerged victorious given that television replays appeared to show Van der Merwe short of the line, but to be fair the Sharks also benefited from an official’s error when assistant referee Christi du Preez missed Lwazi Mvovo’s foot on the touch line for his second try … Continued

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Weekly Sports Wrap, South African sports news – 21 September

Ryan Kankowski

Ryan Kankowski

Sharks in the driving seat after win over Cheetahs
The Sharks cemented their position at the top of the Absa Currie Cup standings with a convincing 30-16 victory over bogey team the Free State Cheetahs at Absa Stadium in Durban on Saturday afternoon. The Durban outfit bagged a full house of log points with an 80-minute performance that would have greatly pleased coach John Plumtree.

Although the coastal team never quite hit top-gear, they nonetheless dominated the game and wrapped up the four-try bonus point with a 78th-minute touch down from reserve scrumhalf Rory Kockott. Livewire eighthman Ryan Kankowski (pictured), who won the ‘Man of the Match’ award, was instrumental in setting up Kockott’s try and the Sharks’ second five pointer – scored in the 29th minute by right wing Odwa Ndungane. Continued

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Weekly Sports Wrap, South African sports news – 14 September

Ashley Johnson

Ashley Johnson

Cheetahs pip Bulls at the post
The Vodacom Free State Cheetahs produced a tenacious all round performance to defeat the Vodacom Blue Bulls 20-14 in a pulsating Absa Currie Cup Premier Division encounter in Bloemfontein on Saturday. In an intense battle, the Cheetahs managed to withstand a late Bulls onslaught to secure victory by a slender six-point margin.

However, although the victory margin was undoubtedly a small one there can be no denying the home side deserved their win. Their defence, particularly in the second half, was outstanding and they took their chances on attack when it counted while the Bulls decision-making let them down badly on occasions. Continued

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Weekly Sports Wrap, South African sports news – 7 September

Morne Steyn

Morne Steyn

Morne’s brilliant boot fails to save Boks
A long range penalty from fullback Kurtley Beale late in the game enabled Australia to record a narrow 41-39 over South Africa in their penultimate Vodacom Tri-Nations fixture at Vodacom Park in Bloemfontein on Saturday. In a nailbiting affair which saw the Springboks claw their way back into the match after trailing 31-13 at the break, it was Beale who held his nerve under pressure to slot the winning kick and earn his side their first win on the highveld since 1963.

Just as was the case at Loftus Versfeld a week ago the Aussies raced into an early lead scoring four converted tries and a penalty while the Boks could only muster two penalties from kicking maestro Morne Steyn (pictured right) in reply. Trailing 31-6 just minutes before half-time it seemed as though the Boks were dead and buried, but a moment of brilliance from veteran lock Victor Matfield set the stage for an unbelievable second half fight back. Continued

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Weekly Sports Wrap, South African sports news – 31 August

Chiliboy Ralepelle

Chiliboy Ralepelle

Shaky Boks prevail in nine-try thriller
The Springboks fought back from a four-point deficit at half time to defeat Australia 44-31 in a tense Vodacom Tri-Nations encounter at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday night. The Boks were pushed all the way by the Wallabies in an entertaining match which yielded nine tries – five of them going to the men in green.

Right-wing JP Pietersen sealed victory for the Boks with a well-taken try after the Wallabies were only six points adrift with just a few minutes left to play. The win was the first for John Smit’s outfit in this year’s Tri-Nations and also ended the Springbok centurion curse, with lock Victor Matfield becoming the first Bok to win in his 100th Test – after Percy Montgomery and Smit lost in their centenary Tests. Continued

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

South African Sports News – 24 August

John Smit

John Smit

Late try burst sinks courageous Boks
Late tries from skipper Richie McCaw and wing Israel Dagg condemned South Africa to a heartbreaking 29-22 defeat against New Zealand at the FNB Stadium in Soweto on Saturday night. The All Blacks’ win secured them the 2010 Vodacom Tri-Nations title and sent the Springboks, who have not been able to win a match in the competition thus far, into the throes of depression.

With New Zealand trailing 22-17 with just two and a half minutes remaining it seemed as though the Boks were heading for victory, but sadly their defence just couldn’t hold out against a late onslought from the men in black. After a series of phases the All Blacks spun the ball down the line to an unmarked McCaw, and the rugged flanker was able to shrug off the attentions of Bryan Habana and Jean de Villiers to squeeze in at the corner flag. Continued

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

South African Sports News – 17 August

Willem de Waal

Willem de Waal

Willem’s boot puts WP back on top
Western Province moved back to top spot on the Currie Cup log when they narrowly defeated the Blue Bulls 15-12 in front of a packed Newlands in Cape Town on Saturday evening. WP were briefly overtaken by the Sharks who thumped the Leopards in Phokeng the previous evening, but Saturday’s win means the Cape outfit move back to the top of the standings with 27 points.

The Sharks are a close second with 26 and both teams now enjoy a comfortable lead over the chasing pack with third placed Griquas six points adrift on 20. WP’s victory also means they remain unbeaten in the competition and although it is still early days yet, Allister Coetzee’s side must certainly be favoured to lift the coveted Currie Cup trophy this season. Continued

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

South African Sports News – 10 August

Juan de Jongh

Juan de Jongh

Perfect Province remain on top
Western Province made it five wins from five starts in this year’s Absa Currie Cup competition when they thrashed a hapless Griquas outfit 50-3 at Hoffe Park in Kimberley on Saturday afternoon. Province ran in six unanswered tries in a dominant performance that confirmed their status as the leading contenders for this year’s title.

Griquas were expected to provide Province with a stern test in Kimberley after defeating the Cape side by a single point there in 2009 and 2008 and losing by no more than five points in 2007 and 2006. And in the early going on Saturday, it looked as though another tight contest was in the making as Province went into the interval just 12-3 ahead. However, the wheels came off for the home side in the second half as the visitors scored 38 unanswered points to romp to victory. Continued

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

South African Sports News – 3 August

Patrick Lambie

Patrick Lambie

Two try Lambie sinks Cheetahs
The Sharks scored their third consecutive victory of the season when they defeated the Vodacom Free State Cheetahs 25-13 in a tense Currie Cup encounter at Vodacom Park in Bloemfontein on Saturday afternoon. Nineteen-year-old centre Patrick Lambie (pictured) turned out to be the hero for the Sharks, scoring two late tries to power the visitors home.

Trailing 13-11 with nine minutes to go, the Sharks looked down and out, but just when it seemed all was lost the inspirational Lambie came to the party and produced some maginificent rugby to send the home side packing and their supporters into the throes of depression. Continued

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

South African Sports News – 27 July

Jaque Fourie

Jaque Fourie

Things go from bad to worse for Boks
The Springboks’ dismal run in this year’s Tri-Nations competition contined on Saturday when they suffered a resounding 30-13 loss to Australia at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. It was the Boks’ third consecutive defeat in as many weeks after back to back losses to the All Blacks and left them at the bottom of the Tri-Nations log without a single point.

When Bok centre Jaque Fourie (pictured) was yellow carded for a second minute tip tackle on Wallaby number eight Richard Brown, one sensed this wasn’t going to be the Boks’ day yet again and so it proved to be as the South Africans failed to get going against a well drilled Australian team. Ill discipline has been a feature of Bok play in recent weeks and one wonders when Pieter de Villiers’ men will get their house in order after so many repeated indiscretions. Continued

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

South African Sports News – 20 July

Danie Rossouw

Danie Rossouw

All Blacks give Boks another rugby lesson
New Zealand scored their second consecutive victory over South Africa in as many weeks with a convincing 31-17 truimph in their Vodacom Tri-Nations fixture in Wellington on Saturday. The All Blacks outscored the Boks by four tries to two and thoroughly deserved their win against a disjointed South African outfit.

To their credit the Boks did put up a better display than they did last weekend in Auckland when they were comprehensively outplayed in all facets of the game to go down 32-12. They were solid in the set-pieces this time out and though one got the impression the All Blacks still won the collisions, there wasn’t much in it. Continued

Monday, 12 July 2010

Iniesta’s late strike wins World Cup for Spain

Andres Iniesta

Andres Iniesta

Iniesta’s late strike wins World Cup for Spain
Spain captured their first ever World Cup trophy when they defeated the Netherlands 1-0 last night courtesy of a 115th minute goal from midfielder Andres Iniesta (pictured). Iniesta slotted the winner in extra time when he was put clear by Cesc Fabregas and drove the ball past a diving Maarten Stekelenburg in the Dutch goal. It was a bitterly disappointing defeat for the Netherlands who suffered their third World Cup final loss after defeats in 1974 and 1978. Continued

Thursday, 8 July 2010

World Cup News – the Final 2

Carles Puyol

Carles Puyol

Puyol powers Spain into final
Spain qualified for their first World Cup final when they defeated Germany 1-0 in a tense encounter at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban yesterday evening. A 73rd minute header from defender Carles Puyol (pictured) was enough to propel ‘La Roja’ into Sunday’s final against Holland at Soccer City in Johannesburg.

Vicente del Bosque’s second ranked side dominated the match but battled to finish off a German team lacking their usual pace until Puyol struck the decisive blow 17 minutes from the end. “Players from defence to attack were extraordinary and played a great game,” said Spain coach del Bosque. Continued

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Currie Cup fixtures

Currie Cup Fixtures

Currie Cup Fixtures

After nearly a month of non-stop football, the FIFA World Cup ends on Sunday but fear not sports lovers, the South African domestic rugby competition, the Currie Cup kicks off on July 9th with weekend fixtures lined up for just over three months.

Use our comprehensive list of matches, times and locations to keep up to date on all the Currie Cup action! Continued

Monday, 5 July 2010

World Cup News – The final four

David Villa

David Villa

Villa puts shaky Spain into last four
Second ranked Spain overcame a determined challenge from 31st ranked Paraguay to progress to the semi-finals of the 2010 Fifa World Cup with a narrow 1-0 victory over the South Americans at Ellis Park on Saturday. It was the first time that Spain have reached the last four of the World Cup since 1950.

In a match of high drama in which both sides squandered penalty kicks, Spain once agained relied on the goal-scoring prowess of striker David Villa (pictured) to secure victory. The 28-year-old Villa scored his fifth goal of the tournament in the 83rd minute to book his side a place in the semi-finals and give them a chance of winning the World Cup for the first time ever. Continued