Toyota Cheetahs And Airlink Pumas Continue To Fight For Top Spot In Round 9 Of Currie Cup Premier Division


The Currie Cup Premier Division serves up a series of spicy clashes in the ninth round as the jostling for positions start to get interesting, with the semi-finals slowly moving into view.

The Toyota Cheetahs and the Airlink Pumas will continue to joust for the top spot on the Premier Division log this weekend. Meanwhile, the race for semi-final positions remains wide open, with only six log points separating the third-placed Cell C Sharks and the seventh-placed Vodacom Bulls.

The Fidelity ADT Lions ended their three-game losing streak when they beat the defending champions in Johannesburg last week. Now that they are the strongest players from the Lions franchise in tow, they will be targeting an important win against the Windhoek Draught Griquas in Kimberley on Friday.

The team from the Northern Cape is coming off a disappointing loss to the Cell C Sharks in Durban. A win at home against the Fidelity ADT Lions this weekend could propel them into the top four. In the previous encounter between the two sides, they secured a 25-18 win.

The Airlink Pumas will be determined to claim a big win when they host the NovaVit Griffons at the Nelspruit Rugby Club on Saturday afternoon. Jimmy Stonehouse’s charges failed to secure a single log point in their recent loss to the Fidelity ADT Lions and surrendered their position at the top of the log as a result.

The NovaVit Griffons lost 33-10 to the Toyota Cheetahs last week. They should be looking to improve on their previous performance against the Airlink Pumas, which culminated in a 64-6 defeat.

One of the biggest clashes of the round sees the Toyota Cheetahs hosting DHL Western Province in Bloemfontein. The Free Staters won the previous battle between the two teams in Cape Town. They may feel that they have what it takes to bank the points this Saturday and to strengthen their position at the top of the log.

And yet, the Toyota Cheetahs haven’t had everything their own way in Bloemfontein this season, losing big games against the Airlink Pumas and Cell C Sharks. DHL WP have won two of their three away fixtures in this campaign, and are coming off a convincing victory against the Vodacom Bulls.

The recent loss in Cape Town has seen the Vodacom Bulls dropping to seventh place in the standings. They desperately need a win against the Cell C Sharks this Saturday to put themselves back into contention for the playoffs.

The Cell C Sharks have won their last two games. They shouldn’t want for motivation when they travel to Loftus Versfeld this Saturday, as they lost to the Vodacom Bulls in round six.

A win in Pretoria will ensure that the KwaZulu-Natalians remain in touch with Toyota Cheetahs and Airlink Pumas at the top of the standings – and that they stay in the hunt for a home semi-final. A defeat this Saturday, however, may see them finishing the round outside of the top four if other results don’t go their way.