A brace of tries from Scotland centre Huw Jones helped Western Province to a spectacular 33-21 victory in the final of the Currie Cup despite playing in the Sharks’ own Durban back yard.
Jones, who has agree to join Glasgow Warriors and is in the national squad for next month’s autumn Tests, was in impressive form to help the Cape Town side win the most prestigious prize in South African domestic rugby.
The Western Province scrum was dominant from first whistle to the last at Kings Park and got the team out of jail on more than one occasion.
The Sharks struck first and looked the better of the two teams in the first 40 minutes, scoring two tries and taking a 21-15 lead into the break.
A sublime midfield break by centre Marius Louw set up the most popular try of the afternoon for veteran winger Odwa Ndungane, who was playing his 251st and final game for the Sharks.
The Sharks’ second came from the big men when the Du Preez brothers between them got the ball over the line. Jean-Luc made the initial burst before brother Dan picked and drove over from close range. The home side should have had another score after full-back Garth April was allowed to weave his way upfield for almost 80 metres only for the move to break down after a wayward pass.
In between the Sharks’ scores Jones had got one back for the visitors, untouched going over the line thanks to another dominant display by the Western Province scrum. Despite their scrum superiority, Western Province were second best for much of the first half but they scored a second crucial try. This time Jones acted as the provider, his miss-pass sending winger Dillyn Leyds over in the corner with the clock well into the red numbers.
That score teed up Province for a spectacular second half in which they scored 18 unanswered points thanks to further tries from flanker Cobus Wiese and, of course, Jones’ second of the afternoon which meant the centre could probably fly back to Scotland without the need of a plane.