Western Province is the undisputed unofficial champions of the 56th annual Craven Week. They proved to have too much firepower in the end for the Blue Bulls in the main match of the tournament at Grey College in Bloemfontein. WP walked from the pitch with the scoreline 56-31 in their favour.
The Blue Bulls put up a valiant effort as Western Province only managing to enjoy a narrow 21-19 lead at half-time. The victors' flyhalf, Kade Wolhuter, had his kicking boots on and converted all of his side's eight tries in the match for a personal contribution of 16 points. Wolhuter also finished the tournament as the top point scorers as he totaled 50 points for the week.
Lock Conor Evans and fullback, Tharquin Manuel, both scored a brace of tries as Western Province proved their dominance at schoolboy level. Evans was outstanding and his two tries in the second half were influential in securing the victory for WP. He was also named Man-of-the-Match afterwards.
The Blue Bulls showed grit in the first half, but Western Province scored too easily shortly after each score by the Bulls. Their flanker Simon Miller, hooker Jacques-Lois du Toit and prop Gerhard van der Merwe held nothing back. In the backs it was their SA Schools scrumhalf, Jurich Claassens, and centre Zeilinga Strydom who can feel happy with their performance.
No player caught the attention like the Limpopo Blue Bulls' Renzo du Plessis during the prestigious tournament. The flanker finished the week on a high as he scored a hat-trick of tries to finish the tournament with five tries. It was however not a happy ending to the tournament for the Limpopo Blue Bulls as they slumped to a 15-43 defeat against the Leopards.
Flyhalf, Justin Cross, was on song for the Blue Bulls XV against the Valke. Cross converted all nine of his side's tries as they smashed the Valke by 63-36 in a high-scoring affair. The Valke's eighthman and captain, Franco Enslin, didn't manage to score, but still finished the tournament as the top try-scorer as he bagged hat-tricks in both his side's other matches.
Western Province 56 (21) - Tries: Connor Evans (2), Tharquin Manuel (2), Gideon van Wyk, Bryan le Roux, Pierich Siebert, Jacques Rossouw. Conversions: Kade Wolhuter (8). Blue Bulls 31 (19) - Tries: Malcolm Langa, AJ Johnson, Zeilinga Strydom, MJ Janse van Rensburg, Penalty Try. Conversions: Wikus Basson (2).
Western Province XV 45 (21) - Tries: Stephan du Toit (3), Dalvon Blood (2), Corne Weilbach, Issy Safodien. Conversions: Kian Meadon (5). South Western Districts 30 (27) - Tries: Ashaldo Kiewiet (2), Francois Breytenbach. Conversions: Alwich van der Linde (3). Penalties: Van der Linde (2).
Border 43 (19) - Tries: Jacques Goosen (2), Oyisa Dyani (2), Cullen Opperman, Ronaldo Daniels, Indiphile Tyeda. Conversions: Sihlalo Benge (2), Warrick Day (2). Boland 26 (19) - Tries: Reneir Viljoen, William Baron, Hugo Mostert, Boldwin Hansen. Conversions: Nathan Engelbrecht (2), Mostert.
Golden Lions 49 (21) - Tries: Ngia Selengbe (2), Declan Raubenheimer (2), TJ Maguranyanga, Jospeh Iye, Henco van Wyk. Conversions: Tiaan Botes (5), Raubenheimer (2). Free State 26 (21) - Tries: Franco Knoetze (2), Petrus Naudé, FC du Plessis. Conversions: Juan-Dee Olivier (2), Du Plessis.
Sharks 53 (10) - Tries: Ockie Barnard (2), Mbasa Nkonki (2), Teague Loelly, Vernon Matongo, Anele Nzimande. Conversions: Jordan Hendrikse (6). Penalties: Hendrikse (2). Griffons 13 (5) - Tries: Frans Postma, Juan-Roscoe Ruiters. Penalty: Mekkie Matthews.
Eastern Province 38 (17) - Tries: Christopher Poole (2), Ambese Zenzile (2), Gideon Serfontein, Sebastian Brandt. Conversions: Juandré Liebenberg (3), Hlumelo Klaas. Pumas 28 (20) - Tries: Xavier Fourie, Martin Venter, Zweli Mokoena. Conversions: Walter Visser (2). Penalties: Visser (3).
Blue Bulls XV 63 (21) - Tries: Armand Fleidl (3), Jaryd Scheepers (2), Manie Potgieter, Tiaan Lange, Shandon Botha, Theunis Pretorius. Conversions: Justin Cross (9). Valke 26 (19) - Tries: Tylon Kotze (2), Hope Ngoy, Tiaan Visser. Conversions: Kyle Potgieter (3).
Leopards 43 (17) - Tries: Jacques Stander (2), Ruben Oosthuizen (2), Dewaldt Theron, Goodwin Nchocho, Isrome Phatudi. Conversions: Ashley Madube (3), Refentse Moabi. Limpopo Blue Bulls 15 (0) - Tries: Renzo du Plessis (3).
Golden Lions XV 38 (7) - Tries: Frans Weideman (2), Heiko Pohlman, Gareth Louw, Sifiso Dlamini, Herschelle Goodman. Conversions: Sebastine Watney (4). Griqualand West 31 (24) - Tries: Stefan Swart, Corné du Plessis, Nolan Diergaardt, Keano Windvogel. Conversions: Du Plessis (4). Penalty: Du Plessis.