It’s a SARU award to be won and by my reckoning outside centre Imanuel Libbok’s two stand out attacking performances for South Western Districts should have him in pole position heading into the final day at Craven Week 2015. Libbok of Outeniqua in George has produced some serious pace to go along with an instinctive reading of game and his backed this up with useful goal-kicking.
2014 winner Curwin Bosch (Grey High) produced an off the chart performance during Eastern Province’s 41-34 victory over SWD on Tuesday but was off his best during the narrow win against KZN a couple of days later. Nevertheless he has been instrumental to defending champions EP being in the final against Western Province and it offers the gifted flyhalf another high profile opportunity to showcase his talent and perhaps become the first player to win the SARU award twice. An interesting footnote is that Bosch and Libbok then of Daniel Pienaar in Uitenhage were EP Grant Khomo teammates back in 2013 before the latter moved to Outeniqua.
In seven previous season’s there has never been a forward winner of the Craven Week Player of the Tournament. 2015 favourites Western Province had a 65-5 field day against Griffons in their semi-final with numerous flashy backs unlocking the Free Staters’ defence at will, however a lot of the damage in their crucial win against the Blue Bulls on Monday was the result of the work done in the engine-room. Here the contributions of big players in the form of captain Ernst van Rhyn (Paarl Gim), Salmaan Moerat and Ruben de Villiers (both HJS Paarl Boys’ High) have been vital.
Other individual performances that have also so far caught the eye belong to Kwezi Mafu (Grey High, EP), Adriaan van der Bank (Worcester Gim, Boland) and Richman Gorrah (Welkom Gim, Griffons).
2014: Curwin Bosch (Grey High & Eastern Province)
2013: Grant Hermanus (Paarl Gymnasium & Western Province)
2012: Sergeal Petersen (Grey High & Eastern Province))
2011: Jan Serfontein (Grey College and Free State)
2010: Johan Goosen (Grey College and Free State)
2009: Andile Jho (Dale College and Border)
2008: Sampie Mastriet (HTS Drostdy and Boland)