Impi beat UWC 21-5 to move to second

2015-03-03 00:00

UKZN Impi secured second place on the Varsity Shield log after a solid 21-5 win over UWC at Howard Campus in Durban last night.

The Durban side played confident running rugby off the back of solid lineouts and scrums while the visitors made tackles for most of a rainy evening on the coast.

Impi found themselves in the driving seat early on in the first half after UWC gave away a number of penalties. After a solid maul from a lineout deep in the visitors’ half, the hosts started putting together phases with some strong ball running from their pack.

A couple of tight phases saw regular eighthman Adam Wessels, who was playing at lock last night, crash over for the first try of the night. Fullback Spa Dube slotted the conversion to make it 8-0 after five minutes of play.

UWC hit back hard after conceding the first try, but a number of their forays into the Impi half ended in disappointment as their handling and discipline let them down.

Play see-sawed for the next 20 ­minutes as both teams battled it out for territory. While Impi enjoyed the lion’s share of possession, silly penalties and errors cost them at times.

Play was fairly balanced at the half way mark as both teams defended solidly. But UWC struck next through lock Stuart Austin, who barged his way over off the back of a rolling maul. A missed conversion left the scores at 8-5 to the hosts.

The wet weather began to play a role as a number of errors plagued both sides until halftime, leaving the score at 8-5 at the break.

The hosts came out firing on attack in the second half and found themselves camped on the UWC try line. A clearance kick led to a yellow card for UWC flank Jose Julies, who put in a very late tackle on replacement Sandile Zulu.

Impi took advantage of the overlap and scored their second try through out centre Marcel Coetzee, who scored in the right-hand corner off some neat handling from the UKZN backline. Dube was unable to covert, leaving the scoreline 13-5.

UKZN continued to dominate play despite the difficult conditions brought about by periodic rain ­showers.

The hosts soon found themselves on the UWC line. Scrumhalf Langelihle Shange dove over off the back of ­another powerful scrum to give the hosts their third and final try of the night while Dube converted to make it 21-5 with 20 minutes to play.

The Impi managed to close the game out with some resolute defence while possession swapped hands for the ­remainder of the match. UKZN had a chance to score a bonus point off a ­lineout just before full time, but ­another handling error squandered that opportunity.

Scorers:

UKZN: 21 (8)

Tries: Adam Wessels, Marcel Coetzee, Langelihle Shange. Conversions: Spa ­Dube (2)

UWC 5 (5)

Tries: Stuart Austin.

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