Cheetahs host Blue Bulls in #CurrieCup opener

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Nico Lee PHOTO: NICOLETTE TALJAARD

The Toyota Free State Cheetahs will open their 2018 Currie Cup Premier Division campaign on 17 August against the Blue Bulls in the opening match.

The Cheetahs do have the privilege of hosting the opening game of the worlds’ oldest domestic competition at the Toyota Stadium.

With the format being confirmed as a single round, the Free State will face the Bulls, Sharks and Pumas at home.

They will travel to tackle the champions Western Province, the Golden Lions and the Griquas.

The derby between Free State and the Griquas will be played in Kimberley on 15 September.

Earlier OFM Sport did report that the format and the fixtures would only be approved during the South Africa Rugby Unions’ General Council and Executive Council meetings in Cape Town next month.

2018 Currie Cup fixtures to be approved in June

Initially it was expected that the Currie Cup would kick-off a little earlier than usual in order to accommodate the Cheetahs in the Guinness Pro14. The tournaments will over-lap once again, however, not in such a big way as last season.

The Cheetahs last group game will be against the Pumas on 22 September, and provided that they do make the play-offs, will only be in action again on 20 and 27 October.

The final will be contested on 27 October.

Currie Cup Premier Division fixtures (all fixtures are subject to change):

Friday, 17 August:

19h00 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs v Blue Bulls (Toyota Stadium, Bloemfontein)

Saturday, 18 August:

14h05 – Pumas v Tafel Lager Griquas (Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit)

Friday, 24 August:

19h00 – Xerox Golden Lions v Tafel Lager Griquas (Ellis Park, Johannesburg)

Saturday, 25 August:

15h00 – Sharks v Vodacom Blue Bulls (Kings Park, Durban)

17h15 – Western Province v Toyota Free State Cheetahs (DHL Newlands, Cape Town)

Friday, 31 August:

19h00 – Pumas v Western Province (Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit)

Saturday, 1 September:

15h00 – Blue Bulls v Golden Lions (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria)

17h15 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs v Sharks (Toyota Stadium, Bloemfontein)

Friday, 7 September:

19h00 – Sharks v Pumas (Kings Park, Durban)

Saturday, 8 September:

15h00 – Tafel Lager Griquas v Blue Bulls (Tafel Lager Park, Kimberley)

17h15 – Golden Lions v Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Ellis Park, Johannesburg)

Saturday, 15 September:

15h00 – Golden Lions v Western Province (Ellis Park, Johannesburg)

17h15 – Tafel Lager Griquas v Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Tafel Lager Park, Kimberley)

19h30 – Vodacom Blue Bulls v Pumas (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria)

Saturday, 22 September:

15h00 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs v Pumas (Toyota Stadium, Bloemfontein)

17h15 – Sharks v Xerox Golden Lions (Kings Park, Durban)

19h30 – Western Province v Tafel Lager Griquas (DHL Newlands, Cape Town)

Saturday, 29 September:

14h00 – Western Province v Sharks (Newlands, Cape Town)

Friday, 12 October:

19h00 – Pumas v Golden Lions (Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit)

Saturday, 13 October:

15h00 – Tafel Lager Griquas v Sharks (Tafel Lager Park, Kimberley)

17h15 – Blue Bulls v Western Province (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria)

Saturday, 20 October: Semi-finals

Saturday, 27 October: Final – MORGAN PIEK