U21 rugby: impressive Sharks outplay Leopards

2013-08-13 00:00

THE Sharks U21 side’s impressive try-scoring abilities edged ahead of rivals Western Province, the Blue Bulls, Free State and Golden Lions in a tightly contested U21 Provincial Championship, but there is still a lot to play for in the coming weeks.

The east coast side have so far scored 23 tries in their four matches, including nine in Potchefstroom last Friday, as they brushed the Leopards aside in a very impressive 62-18 win, helping them to pick up valuable bonus points along the way.

After notching up four wins, the Sharks side have 16 log points — with Western Province (15), the Blue Bulls and Free State (both 14) and Golden Lions (10).

With KwaZulu-Natal taking on Western Province this weekend and the Blue Bulls hosting Free State, there will again be log movement in a week’s time.

The nine-try romp in Potchefstroom started in the fourth minute for the visitors, as fullback Sean Robinson raced through to set the tone. Strong running centre André Esterhuizen, who incidentally hails from nearby Klerksdorp, scored three times for the visitors, as the KZN backline had way too much pace and power for the home side.

SCORERS

Leopards under 21 18 (6). Tries: Armandt Stoman, Rowayne Beukman. Conversion: J.J. du Plessis. Penalty. Warren Gilbert (2).

KZN under 21 62 (34). Tries: André Esterhuizen (3), Guy Alexander, Hanco Venter, Johan Meyer, Robert du Preez, Sean Robinson, Tyler Fisher. Conversions: Du Preez (4), Brendan Cope (3). Penalty: Du Preez.

The U19 clash in Potchefstroom proved to be close, despite the Sharks building up an encouraging 15-5 lead at the break. The Durban-based team showed their intent with a try by centre Sandile Kubeka in the 12th minute, but the Leopards hit back six minutes later with a try of their own.

The teams were closely matched in terms of skill, but a late try by the Sharks in the dying minutes of the first half handed them a fair lead.

The Leopards came out fighting after the break and they capitalised on their point-scoring chances to increase their try tally to three. But the Sharks slotted over three second-half penalties to add to one in the first half, which secured their third victory of the tournament.

SCORERS

Leopards 17 (5). Tries: Andries du Plooy (2), Roche Steenkamp (1). Conversion: Cornelius Swart.

Sharks 24 (15). Tries: Bartholomeus Gabriel le Roux, Sandile Kubeka. Conversion: Colin Willemse. Penalties: Colin Willemse (2), Jean-Luc du Plessis (2).

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