The Vodacom Cup champions believe they can get their Absa Currie Cup campaign off to a winning start at Loftus Versfeld on Friday night.
Nevermind that close neighbours, the Blue Bulls, boast a whopping 21 titles to the Falcons’ zero, and the Pretoria team has been the dominant force in the Currie Cup for the past four years despite losing out to the Cheetahs in last year’s dramatic final.
The fact that the Bulls are missing 27 players gives the Falcons hope of an upset in the opening round. They are a team capable of rising to the occasion as witnessed in the Vodacom Cup final win over the Natal Wildebeest.
The Falcons, or Valke they prefer to be known, had a fantastic run in the Vodacom Cup, but were expected to be cannon-fodder for the rampant Wildebeest outfit in the final.
Fullback Jan Cloete says the confidence gained from that victory will hold them in good stead in the Currie Cup. “We are a lot more positive now and believe in ourselves. We are not here just to make up the numbers, our aim is to qualify for the semi-finals,” Cloete told keo.co.za.
The Falcons are targetting the Pumas and Griquas matches home and away to get maximum points and will be a difficult nut to crack on the hard field at the Bosman Stadium in Brakpan. Thus a win away against the Bulls in round one will be ideal.
“We know we have to beat one or two of the big teams and we have prepared well. We are going for the win on Friday.” Whatever the result on Friday, it is good to see one of the smaller unions putting themselves back on the map.
By Andrew Hollely