Rudolph Jacobs
Rugby Journalist
2 minute read
25 Nov 2020
6:09 am

Lost points will see the Lions start their Currie Cup challenge on the back foot

Rudolph Jacobs

The Bulls start in prime position, with the log points from their championship-winning Super Rugby Unlocked campaign having been carried over.

The Lions will have to hit the ground running when they kick off their Currie Cup campaign against Griquas this weekend.. Picture: Lions Rugby

The Golden Lions find themselves on the back foot for the Currie Cup – even before the competition has started.

The Bulls start in prime position, with the log points from their championship-winning Super Rugby Unlocked campaign having been carried over.

Not everyone appears to be in favour of the accumulated points being carried over to the new-look provincial competition, as it is seen to put certain teams at an immediate disadvantage.

The Lions will launch their campaign from fifth place, having carried 12 points across and are already five points behind the Cheetahs, on 17, and a further two adrift of Western Province and the Sharks, on 19, while Unlocked champions, the Bulls, have 23 points.

The Ellis Park-based side, however, remain hopeful that their second cancelled game against the Pumas, may still be re-scheduled, but that is looking increasingly unlikely with a crammed Currie Cup programme ahead and the Pumas already back in action against the Sharks in Durban on Friday.

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As it stands, the Lions were already awarded two points from that indefinitely postponed match.

Having also shared the points with the Cheetahs in another of the matches cancelled due to Covid-19 protocols, the Lions can barely afford to lose a game in the Currie Cup, while hoping other results work in their favour.

Kicking off this weekend, the Lions travel to Kimberley to face Griquas, who made life very difficult for the Sharks in their last home game, going down at the death by just a single point (34-33).

Griquas scrumhalf and captain Zak Burger said after losing all their games in the Unlocked series they would be fired up to put an end to their losing run against the visitors from Joburg.

“I feel we have been competitive and matched the bigger unions. We don’t have the budget of the bigger unions but we have that willingness to fight for each other,” said Burger.

“The Lions have sat out a few games due to Covid. It’s never nice for the big unions to come to Kimberley and we hope to make life difficult for the Lions,” he added.

What might make life even trickier for the Lions is that four of their six matches in the Currie Cup are away from home, with only two games – against the Sharks and Western Province – scheduled for Ellis Park.

Although it might seem like the Lions got a raw deal with two of their “home games” in the Unlocked series having been called off, the reverse fixtures work out the same for every one of the teams.

Especially challenging for the Lions are scheduled away games against the Blue Bulls and the Cheetahs, while they will also visit Griquas and the Pumas.

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