Blue Bulls crush Leopards in Currie Cup

The Blue Bulls crushed the Leopards 92-21 in their final round Currie Cup match at Loftus Versfeld on Friday.

The hosts have done everything in their powers to keep their playoff chances alive by putting 92 points past the Leopards and scoring 14 tries in the process.

The rest, however, is not in their hands as they now shift their focus to tomorrow’s match between Western Province and the Pumas where their fate will be determined.

They will hope that Province do not score four tries, to secure a bonus-point and do not win by more than 13 points against the Pumas.

The home side scored the first try when they shifted the ball quickly through the hands with Akona Ndungane receiving the ball close to the touchline to cross the line, with flyhalf Louis Fouche converting the try.

The Pretoria-based side added two more tries to take their score to 21-0 with eighthman CJ Stander and Jano Vermaak adding a five-pointer each.

Shortly after the first quarter, the Leopards finally got a rub of the green with pivot Wesley Dunlop running off scrumhalf Johann Laker’s shoulder to score under the sticks and converting his own try.

The Bulls then scored their fourth try for a bonus point when centre Francois Venter picked up a try.

Venter’s centre partner Wynand Olivier beat his opposite number before he gave the ball out to Venter to add the five points.

The Bulls were dealt two injury setbacks, after Flip van der Merwe first left the field with an ankle injury, and then Olivier was knocked out in a tackle and was stretchered off.

A minute after play resumed, lock Juandre Kruger scored his first of two tries on the night, with Fouche converting to take the scores to 35-7.

The Leopards replied with two tries within the space of four minutes.

The first try came when centre Joubert Engelbrecht followed up a clever grubber kick from the boot of Dunlop to score next to the posts.

With no time left in the first half the Leopards received a penalty and decided to run the ball.

This caught the Bulls off guard as fullback Hoffmann Maritz found a gap and beat last man on defence, Francois Venter to score. Dunlop converted to take the half-time score to 35-21.

After the interval the Bulls let loose, as they added nine more tries to the five of the first half.

Kruger opened the second half scoring as he dove over in the 45th minute.

Six minutes later winger Bjorn Basson scored his first of a hat-trick of tries and with Fouche converting the scores moved to 47-21.

The Bulls were in rampant form as they scored at regular intervals with Arno Botha, Gary Botha, Stander and Francois Brummer scoring a five-pointer each.

The Leopards received two yellow cards near the end of the encounter with referee Stuart Berry also giving a penalty try against them.

Final Score Blue Bulls 92 (35) Leopards 21 (21)


Blue Bulls
Tries: Akona Ndungane, CJ Stander (2), Jano Vermaak, Francois Venter, Juandre Kruger (2), Bjorn Basson (3), Penalty try, Arno Botha, Gary Botha, Francois Brummer.
Conversions: Louis Fouché (11).

Tries: Wesley Dunlop, Joubert Engelbrecht, Hoffmann Maritz
Conversions: Dunlop (3)

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