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WP kick off Currie Cup campaign with impressive win over Lions in Cape Town

Western Province's Paschal Ekeji and Tristan Leyds celebrate Angelo Davids’ try during their Currie Cup game against the Lions at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday. Photo: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Western Province's Paschal Ekeji and Tristan Leyds celebrate Angelo Davids’ try during their Currie Cup game against the Lions at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday. Photo: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jan 15, 2022

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Cape Town — Western Province got their 2022 Currie Cup campaign off to a winning start as they ran in seven tries to the Lions’ five at Cape Town Stadium.

With the Currie Cup and the United Rugby Championship running concurrently, both sides had a healthy dose of youngsters.

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Province got off to a strong start and showed good intent as they turned down a shot at posts to go for the try, and they were rewarded for their ambition when Adre Smith crossed over for a converted score (7-0).

Dameon Venter added a try for the visitors later in the opening quarter (7-5), but WP flyhalf Tim Swiel stretched the hosts’ lead when he added a penalty conversion to take the score to 10-5.

The Lions closed in on the margin with a penalty by Vaughan Isaacs (10-8), but Province’s attacking intent saw standout performer and Sevens star Angelo Davids - who recently returned full time after making both his Stormers and Western Province debut in 2020 after having focused more on Sevens in 2021 - ran in a well-worked converted try early in the second quarter to stretch their points advantage to 17-8.

Experienced hooker Chad Solomon added his name to the try-scoring list when he went over for the Cape side’s third five-pointer (22-8).

The Capetonians went one man down when Smith was shown yellow, and the Lions capitalised on their numerical advantage when Mark Snyman ran their second try (22-15).

Davids made sure that Province remained in control of the scoreboard, however, when he bagged his brace after some superb work on the outside by No 8 Hacjivah Dayimani, who produced a superb Man-of-the-Match performance 29-15).

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Playing their first match in front of a crowd since 2019, with 2000 fully vaccinated spectators allowed to attend according to government Covid-19 protocols, Jerome Paarwater’s side made better use of their opportunities overall in the opening half, and they were first to score after the break when Dayimani added a converted try to make their lead a more commanding one (36-15).

The Lions did well to fight back in the second half and their maul continued to work a treat. Zeilinga Strydom contributed a converted try for the Johannesburg side (36-22), but Davids got his hat-trick at the start of the final quarter to take the score to 41-22.

The visitors managed another try through Boldwin Hansen, but Deon Fourie added WP’s seventh.

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Darnell Osuagwu bagged a late try for the Lions, but Province had done enough to secure a convincing win in an entertaining Round One encounter.

Point scorers:

Western Province — 48: Tries: Adre Smith, Angelo Davids (3), Chad Solomon, Hacjivah Dayimani, Deon Fourie Conversions: Tim Swiel (4), Chris Schreuder Penalty: Swiel

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Lions — 36: Tries: Dameon Venter, Mark Snyman, Zeilinga Strydom, Boldwin Hansen, Darnell Osuagwu Conversions: Vaughan Isaacs (4) Penalty: Isaacs

@WynonaLouw

IOL Sport

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