WP breeze past Pumas, return to winning ways

Cape Town - Western Province returned to winning ways with a commanding 45-14 win over the Pumas in front of around 7 500 spectators at Newlands on Friday. 

It was a crucial win for the hosts, who secured a bonus point by scoring seven tries on the day to move up to 3rd in Currie Cup standings with two wins from their four outings. 

Coach John Dobson's men had lost their two previous fixtures against the Lions (30-28) and the Sharks (32-27), but this win puts their campaign back on track while they are now in the running for a home semi-final once more. 

There was also a welcomed return for Springbok captain Siya Kolisi, who got through 48 minutes unscathed before leaving the field to a warm applause. 

Kolisi, who has now fully recovered from a knee injury, will be expected to link up with the Boks in Pretoria ahead of their clash against Argentina at Loftus next weekend. 

The small but vocal crowd was silenced early on as the Pumas struck first after just five minutes through outside centre Alwayno Visagie, but WP hit back with three tries in just eight minutes. 

That wave of WP attack was something that the Pumas could never recover from as they were outplayed in every department, going into the half-time break 31-7 down. 

In that first half, Sikhumbuzo Notshe was instrumental while Dillyn Leyds, Sergeal Petersen and Seabelo Senatla were livewires. 

The visitors were improved in the second period and had two tries disallowed after TMO intervention, but they were never going to change the outcome of the contest. 

They did have something to celebrate, though, when flyhalf Chris Smith crossed the line for a consolation try after a sustained period of attack. 

It was still WP who had the final say, however, as Ruhan Nel went over from close range in the final play of the game.

The Pumas stay 5th on the Currie Cup log with just one win from six, and with just one fixture remaining in their campaign they are all but out of the running for a semi-final place. 

They host Free State next weekend, while WP host Griquas. 

Scorers:

WP 45 (31)

Tries: Sergeal Petersen, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Seabelo Senatla (2), Justin Phillips, Ernst van Rhyn, Ruhan Nel

Conversions: Josh Stander (3), Jean-Luc du Plessis (2)

Pumas 14 (7)

Tries: Alwayo Visagie, Chris Smith

Conversions: Smith (2)

Teams:

Western Province

15 Dillyn Leyds, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Ruhan Nel, 12 Dan Kriel, 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Josh Stander, 9 Justin Phillips, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 JD Schickerling, 4 Chris van Zyl (captain), 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Corne Fourie

Substitutes: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Neethling Fouche, 19 Salmaan Moerat, 20 Nama Xaba, 21 Godlen Masimla, 22 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 23 Edwill van der Merwe

Pumas

15 Devon Williams, 14 Morne Joubert, 13 Alwayno Visagie, 12 Ryan Nell (captain), 11 Etienne Taljaard, 10 Christopher Smith, 9 Ashlon Davids, 8 Jeandre Rudolph, 7 Willie Engelbrecht, 6 Francois Kleinhans, 5 Stefan Willemse, 4 Le Roux Roets, 3 Marne Coetzee, 2 Marko Janse van Rensburg, 1 Andrew Beerwinkel

Substitutes: 16 Simon Westraadt, 17 De-Jay Terblanche, 18 Hilton Lobberts, 19 Phumzile Maqondwana, 20 Ginter Smuts, 21 Jacobus Marais, 22 Ruwellyn Isbell, 23 Morgan Naude