The Cell C Sharks XV ended their season in style as they recorded a 29-24 (halftime 19-12) win over the SWD Eagles in their provincial tournament clash at the Outeniqua Park in George on Friday.
Both teams came into the match with identical records after winning just five of their respective 13 matches with both teams having registered 28 log points.
But the Sharks XV ended what had been an underwhelming competition by holding off the Eagles with both teams playing their part in an entertaining contest with each team recording four tries apiece.
The Sharks XV scrumhalf Hanco Venter ended with a brace of tries while flyhalf Innocent Radebe kicked three conversions and a penalty for a personal haul of nine points.
The visitors opened the scoring in the ninth minute when flank Johan du Toit barged his way over for an unconverted score.
But the hosts levelled the score five minutes later when tighthead prop Dean Hopp rumbled his way over for a try.
Venter nabbed his first try, in the 16th minute, with Radebe slotting the conversion.
However, the hosts struck back in the 22nd minute when lock Lodewyk Uys barged over for a converted try.
The Sharks XV had the last say in the first-half as they went to the break leading 19-12 courtesy of an unconverted try from tighthead prop Gerhardus Engelbrecht.
The Eagles levelled the score for the third time in the match when replacement hooker Mark Pretorius dotted down in the 48th minute with pivot Mark Kean kicking the conversion.
But the Sharks XV made sure of their win as Radebe kicked a penalty before Venter sniped over for his second try, in the 55th minute.
The Eagles managed to narrow the gap with a consolation try from replacement wing Clint Wagman in the 77th minute,
SWD Eagles – Tries: Dean Hopp, Lodewyk Uys, Mark Pretorius, Clint Wagman; Conversions: Thomas Keen (2).
Cell C Sharks XV – Tries: Johan du Toit, Hanco Venter (2), Gerhardus Engelbrecht; Conversions: Innocent Radebe (3); Penalty: Radebe.