KZN’ Craven boys beat WP to the final against Golden Lions

2011-07-14 00:00

IT was not a classic, but with two sides wanting to play running rugby, it was enjoyable and exciting.

KZN’s first game on Tuesday at Craven Week, being held in Kimberley, ended in an admirable win against Western Province.

The defence from both sides was committed, which included some bone-crunching tackles.

This tight game, won 23-21 by KZN, was played in a good spirit with no foul-play infringements, and with both teams each scoring three tries.

The possession stakes were won by KZN and thus they should have secured the game earlier by scoring tries from a number of chances that they had created.

The local team was better in the line-outs, but it was WP that had the better in the scrums.

Man of the Match Sibolelu Nanto from George Campbell did superbly in the loose play, bringing about a number of turnovers.

At the break, WP led 7-5 but the possession advantage that KZN enjoyed in the last 15 minutes of the half should have seen them ahead.

The opening try was scored from a maul following a line out, by SA Schools flank and captain of WP, Sikhumbuzo Notshwe (Wynberg). Flyhalf Handre Pollard (Paarl Gym) added the extra two points.

A few minutes later, KZN replied when flyhalf Robert du Preez (Kearsney) dummied through a gap to score under the poles. The conversion was, however, missed by a far too casual approach.

KZN took the lead five minutes into the second half after two long passes, first from KZN captain and scrum half Stefan Ungerer (Maritzburg College) to du Preez, and then from the flyhalf to centre Tyler Fisher (Westville), who broke a tackle to dot down.

This time, wing Siyabonga Tom (Glenwood) took more time over the conversion and put his side 12-7 ahead.

Tom then increased the lead with a penalty to 15-7.

A high kick from du Preez was missed by a defender and Tom was quick to react, passing to hooker Jacques Taylor (Glenwood) who showed good pace, running 30 metres to score.

The conversion was missed but the lead had been extended to 20-7.

Did KZN then relax their efforts? Probably not, but WP certainly increased their ball retention and centre Kyle Lombard (Paul Roos) scored after a number of phases.

This was again converted by Pollard for the gap to be reduced to six points.

Another Tom penalty gave KZN some breathing space by extending the lead to 23-14.

With three minutes remaining, WP scored from a ruck and the TV ref’s assistant took many minutes before declaring that a try had been scored, credited to impressive loose forward Andrea Derckson, another Paul Roos player.

KZN have now been put down to play the final game today against the Golden Lions.

All the results from the first round:

Yesterday: Free State 14 Blue Bull 11; Valke 39 SWD 23; Pumas 51 Boland 26; Griquas 53 Namibia 3; EPCD 40 Leopards 17

Tuesday: Zimbabwe 68 Border Country 3; Griffons 22 Limpopo 16; Lions 39 EP 13; KZN 23 WP 21; Border 33 Griquas Country 12

Monday: Namibia 40 Leopards 19; Valke 42 EP Country 15; Blue Bulls 50 Boland 15; Free State 56 Pumas 32; SWD 23 Griquas 19

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