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Backline marshalls will be key in SA Cup final

───   MORGAN PIEK 07:44 Thu, 23 May 2024

Backline marshalls will be key in SA Cup final | News Article
Clinton Swart - Morgan Piek

“George Whitehead has had an unbelievable season, I mean, just thinking back of his drop goal last week against the Cheetahs, it was actually incredible to see that.”

Discipline will be a key focus area for the Suzuki Griquas during Saturday’s SA Cup final that will be played in Kimberley.

The Griquas as well as the Pumas both boast outstanding flyhalves in George Whitehead and Clinton Swart.

Both players, who previously represented the Cheetahs, are in good form, are high in confidence, have good kicking games, and can long-range penalties with ease.

‘The battle between the backline marshals will be interesting’

The Griquas assistant coach, Franco van der Merwe, told OFM Sport that the battle between the backline marshals will be interesting.

“They’re probably the two players that stood out in the SA Cup in terms of the kicking percentages, controlling the game, and game management,” said Van der Merwe.

“They’ve really been having a great season so far.

‘Discipline on both sides will be vital’

“George Whitehead has had an unbelievable season, I mean, just thinking back of his drop goal last week against the Cheetahs, it was actually incredible to see that.

“I think both of them put their pack or their team on the front foot and can get a team easily into leading the score and chipping away like they did last time.

“Clinton Swart kicks from 60 meters very easily and he’s comfortable at that distance. Discipline on both sides will be vital in this game, especially with two flyhalves like that.”

George Whitehead. Photo: Morgan Piek

Van der Merwe added following their unbeaten campaign and three wins on the bounce in the warm-up matches, very little prep needs to be done for the final and it’s more a matter of just dialling in and making sure that the minds and bodies are ready for the championship match.

“It you think back starting in January in the preseason, and just coming off an Airlink Cup from last year, a lot of prep has gone into this final game, and its finals week, so all the prep has been done.

“You’re right in saying that, it’s just polishing the last few things and making sure that we have the right mindset and enough energy for this weekend.”

Saturday’s final at the Suzuki Stadium will kick off at 12:30.

 OFM Sport/Morgan Piek mvh

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