The Golden Lions and Western Province will meet in Saturday’s unofficial U18 Craven Week final, reports SIMON BORCHARDT.
The Lions bashed the Blue Bulls 41-14 on Thursday, having beaten SWD 59-26 on Monday. WP, who won last year’s unofficial final, have beaten Boland (41-20) and the Sharks (60-5) this week.
Free State, the only other unbeaten team at Craven Week, will consider themselves unlucky to miss out on Saturday’s main match. They thrashed the Valke (68-26) and the Leopards (86-19) in their two games, and would have fancied their chances of beating the Lions and WP had they been given the opportunity to play them. Free State will meet the Blue Bulls in their last match.
To be fair to the organisers, though, they had an impossible task when selecting the two teams for the unofficial final. WP, as the defending champions, had to be there, and the Lions would also have been extremely unlucky to have missed out.
It is also worth pointing out that there has never been an official Craven Week final, with no trophy awarded to the ‘winners’. Former Springbok captain and Sarfu president Danie Craven always wanted the week to be a festival, and not a competition.
Meanwhile, Western Province will face the Blue Bulls in the unofficial final of the U18 Academy Week on Saturday. WP have beaten SWD (47-0) and the Golden Lions (31-29) this week, while the Bulls were far too good for EP (57-15) and the Leopards (77-7).
U18 Craven Week Day 5 fixtures (16 July):
Zimbabwe vs Namibia (08:00)
Boland vs Border (08:50)
Griquas Country Districts vs Border Country Districts (09:35)
Eastern Province vs SWD (10:25)
Limpopo Blue Bulls vs EP Country Districts (10:50)
Blue Bulls vs Free State (12:00)
Griffons vs Leopards (12:15)
Pumas vs Sharks (13:35)
Valke vs Griquas (13:40)
Western Province vs Golden Lions (15:10)
U18 Academy Week Day 5 fixtures (16 July):
Pumas Country Districts vs SA LSEN (08:15)
Griquas Country Districts vs Border Country Districts (09:00)
Border vs SWD (09:00)
Free State vs Sharks Country Districts (09:35)
Griffons Country Districts vs Limpopo Blue Bulls (10:20)
Griffons vs Leopards (10:20)
Pumas vs Boland (10:55)
Valke Country Districts vs EP Country Districts (11:40)
Valke vs Griquas (11:40)
Golden Lions vs Sharks (12:15)
Namibia vs Eastern Province (12:50)
Western Province vs Blue Bulls (13:35)
Photo: Steve Haag/Gallo Images