A devastating half of rugby saw Province run in three tries at Newlands as they took control of the match to lead 24-0 at the break.

Debutant Justin Geduld crossed after six minutes following some good movement in the backline, before another debutant, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, extended their lead in the 16th minute. Demetri Catrakilis converted both.

The fly-half added a further three points midway through the half with a penalty following Nicolaas van Dyk's yellow card and Brok Harris ran in another try before the break, which Catrakilis again converted.

To their credit, Griquas improved in the second half and scored two tries of their own through Ruaan Lerm and Abrie Griesel, however it was not enough as Province added another 12 points courtesy of Cheslin Kolbe's try and Notshe's second to return to the top of the table.

They replaced the Lions, who had occupied the summit after their 29-15 win over the Pumas on Friday, the hosts running in four tries on their way to victory.

Two scores in the opening eight minutes saw the Lions assume control of the match and they lead 19-3 at half-time.

A second-half fightback from the Pumas was not enough, and the Lions strengthened their play-off claims with a bonus-point victory.

Eastern Province Kings' dismal campaign continued as they slipped to a seventh successive defeat, this time losing 37-22 to the Cheetahs in Port Elizabeth.

A try from Francois Venter and three Willie du Plessis penalties gave the visitors the lead early in Saturday's clash and they held a six-point advantage at half time.

They completed their win with three further tries after the break to pile more misery on the Kings.

Meanwhile, defending champions the Sharks kept their hopes of making the play-offs alive with a 26-15 win over the Bulls.

Tries from Lwazi Mvovo and S'bura Sithole were enough to ensure Sharks stayed third in the standings as the season nears a climax.