Just as the 2011 Absa Currie Cup season takes rugby centre stage from the Vodacom Super Rugby tournament, you could be forgiven with such an abundance of rugby in our sights for a bit of confusion between these two esteemed tournaments.
Both are brutal, nail-biting and as exciting as it gets but it’s important to remember that the Absa Currie Cup that kicked off in mid-July is extra special because it’s our very own provincial tournament, as local and as lekker as it gets, and is filled with century-old rivalries, tradition, heritage and intense regional pride – not to mention being the oldest local tournament in the world.
Traditionally, the Absa Currie Cup has always kept us warm through the cold winter months and is played each winter through to spring from July to October. This home competition features teams representing either entire provinces or substantial regions within provinces, and is purely a local, provincial tounament.
That is why, after 122 years of the Absa Currie Cup, it’s not only in our blood but definitely in our genes too! If your dad supported DHL Western Province or the MTN Golden Lions, it’s probably a given that your granddad did too, and now, so do you, no matter what! Honouring the oval ball since 1889, the coveted golden cup remains the apple of many a rugby fan’s eye and will forever be the most sought after trophy in South African rugby’s cabinet.
On the other hand, Vodacom Super Rugby started in 1996, sources players from multiple provinces and is considered the toughest rugby tournament in the southern hemisphere. It’s a SANZAR competition, meaning it’s between the top regional teams from South Africa, New Zealand and Australia. The championship started as the Super 10, and then became the Super 12, before expanding into the Super 14 competition. This year saw it grow into 15 teams and was rebranded as Super Rugby.
Both the tournaments are absolutely legendary in their toughness and status. For one thing, a northern hemisphere team has never beaten a Super Rugby team from the southern hemisphere. For another, the Absa Currie Cup is globally recognised as the toughest provincial tournament – rugby fans from all over the world watch our local competition because it’s that good.
The war cry for this year’s Absa Currie Cup is “My team, my passion” and all the details for the rip-roaring action can be found at www.absacurriecup.co.za. Online there’s an exciting competition where you can prove you are your team’s Biggest Fan and win R100,000, plus much more. Show the nation how far you will go for your team!