Currie Cup hots up

Two rugby legends – one ex-Blue Bulls and the other ex-Sharks – speak to ahead of the crunch Absa Currie Cup clash at Loftus Versfeld tomorrow.

The two men, Naas Botha and Mark Andrews, firmly believe their own team will win what promises to be a titanic battle, but as was the case when the two clashed in the Vodacom Super 14, one of them will be proved wrong.

Who will it be?

Naas Botha (Blue Bulls): “I always maintain that home ground advantage should always be too much of a factor for whatever visiting team. It’s going to be tough on the Sharks and they got a shock last week so the pressure is on and the Bulls played their best game last week. The Bulls should take it, but the Sharks are good so whatever it will be a close game.

“The Sharks lost valuable points last week and it could really count in the long run. That said Dick (Muir) is promoting the talent in his ranks and that should work in the future, but this is the Currie Cup and you play to win no matter what. And I just don’t see the Bulls slipping another home game. They will protect that with fierce rugby for sure.”

Mark Andrews (Sharks): “To be honest, I’m more sad about missing the Bulls versus Sharks game than I am happy about watching the Boks in Wellington live. I think it will be a fantastic game at Loftus. I think if the Sharks can regroup and can fire for the full 80 minutes they will take it. Resting the players may cause them to lose their rhythm, but at the same time they will be fresher.

“I have been impressed with four teams this year – the Sharks, Bulls, Cheetahs and Western Province – so any clash between those four gets the juices flowing. And without the Boks, the rest of the guys are showing they can still produce quality rugby. I have been very impressed. Tomorrow night there will be plenty of emotion as these two teams have quite a history.”

By Andrew Hollely