What is it with 41? This is the 3rd game now where we have gone down to 41 points, strange!
Facing the UWC Varsity Shield side was always going to be a challenge, a well drilled, conditioned and physical side. However our boys stood up and were counted.
The forwards are to be congratulated on holding their own in the scrums against a far bigger pack, we even managed to “skollie” a tigthead! Lineouts were of the same calibre, losing only a handful to probably the tallest lock in SLB.
The backs showed what they are capable of and we were entetained to some good running rugby. Unfortunately, there were some issues that did not go our way. We had no less than 5 clean cut try scoring opportunities not taken due to that nasty word that keeps rearing its ugly head in our matches, mistake! I’m not one to publicly make an issue about officialdom as I know their job is not an easy one but seriously, 3 sets of eyes on the park and none picked up the multitude of knock ons, forward passes, coming in at the sides at the breakdown, repeated late hits, a loosehead that stood straight up from his first scrum till last. But, hey, that’s how the cookie crumbles as they say!
Finally sticking to some semblance of the game plan gave our boys the opportunity to show us some traditional Villager running rugby and it was fantastic to hear the roar of the small, but vocal, crowd cheering them on. Through this we saw both our tries scored with Louis Gabriel getting over the white line followed by some enterprising interplay to put lock Sean Mollentze down the sideline and crashing over for a well worked try. At 24-10 down and with the boys suddenly controlling multiple phases of play, there was about a 10 to 15 minute window of opportunity to turn the game on its head, the time was ripe for an upset. This was not to be and a resurgent UWC struck back with some vengeance.
Fly half Tim Marsh struggled into the start of the second half with a leg injury and was substituted by Sean Fickling who moved to scrumhalf and Christo Terblanche shifting one down to take up the flyhalf position, Sean settling in and doing a fine job in an unfamiliar position and Christo taking ownership of 10 and running the backline with superb efficiency. Both Yale and Dylan had a solid performance at centre and Yale, a current U20, is growing in confidnce very game and is a man to watch out for in the future. Donny Venter at wing stepped it up from the Kuilsriver game and put in some scintillating runs. Aya on the othe wing had a somewhat quiet 1st half but came into the game strongly the second half. Louis Gabriel had a fantastic game at 15, great communication, solid under the high ball and a try to boot!
The frontrow of Gary, Jarrod and Jamie were solid. Jamie particularly showing us some running skills not dissimilar to Schalk Brits. Sean at lock had probably one of his best games of the season getting another try under his belt and it was unfortunate to see him go off with what I hope is a minor injury. George, the work horse, was everywhere on the park, the loose forwards of Brodie and Kwaks punched way above their weight and put in solid performances. Vukile, making his début showed that he has the potential to go a long way, with a bit of fine tuning we will see a competent and strong rugby player emerge over time. Thanks to the reserves that came on to wind the game down, Patrick, Gerry and pretty Luke who were all solid in heir gameplay. To the others that didn’t get on, there is always next time.
Overall a far better game, the scoreline does not give a true reflection of the game and I have faith that the boys have discovered their “mojo” and will make happen what they now know they are capable of doing.
Try scorers: Louis Gabriel and Sean Mollentze