Fairytale ending for Botes

2014-10-04 00:00

SHARKS veteran Jacques Botes had a fairytale ending to his final home game at King’s Park after his side held on for a narrow 26-23 win over the Lions last night.

The Sharks were given some bad news early on as centre Paul Jordaan was stretchered off within the first 10 minutes after receiving a nasty-looking late tackle. But his replacement Fred Zeilinga would play a vital role, scoring 21 of his team’s points.

Around the 10-minute mark Lions fullback Marnitz Boshoff dropped into the pocket for a drop goal which just sailed wide after some promising Lions attack. Just minutes later, he made up for the miss by slotting a penalty after the Sharks wandered offside on defence.

Around the 20-minute mark, the Sharks struck back after a good passage of play from a lineout on half way. The ball moved both sides of the field before young centre André Esterhuizen crashed over for the first try of the match but Lionel Cronje failed to add the extras.

Five minutes later Boshoff kicked a penalty after a high tackle from Sharks lock Marco Wentzel to make the score 6-5 to the Lions.

At the half-hour mark Esterhuizen was shown a yellow card after leading with an elbow while the Sharks were on attack, which squandered some promising play.

Just a minute later Lions wing Ruan Combrinck snatched an intercept to score under the posts for a converted try to make it 13-5 to the visitors. There was an air of justice as he had been on the receiving end of Esterhuizen’s elbow.

The Sharks then narrowed the deficit to two points after Fred Zeilinga slotted consecutive penalties before the teams went into the shed for half time with the score line reading 13-11 to the visitors.

Zeilinga opened the scoring in the second half and added another shortly after the Lions were caught offside in their half to make it 17-13.

Once again the replacement stepped up after the Lions conceded a penalty just inside their half and added another three points to give his side a seven point margin.

Boshoff and Zeilinga then traded penalties to make it 23-16 with 20 minutes to play.

The Lions then struck back with a try through centre Stokkies Hanekom after a quick tap inside the Sharks half and Boshoff added the extras to make it 23-all.

With just over 10 minutes to go, reserve flank Derick Minnie was shown a yellow for entering the ruck from the side but Zeilinga missed his first kick of the night.

He made up for it minutes later with the winning penalty kick after the Lions were caught offside in their 22 to make the final score 26-23.

Botes was named man of the match to add to the occasion.

Points scorers

Sharks 26 (11): Tries: Esterhuizen. Penalties: Zeilinga (7)

Lions 23 (13): Tries: Hanekom, Combrinck. Conversions: Boshoff (1).

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