Hamiltons RFC ran in 10 unanswered tries in a complete annihilation of old foes, Villager FC, at the Steven Oval in their Western Province Super League A Fixture on Friday Night. The final score was 66 – 3 to Hamiltons after they led 33 – 3 at half time.
As the cool and crisp air wafted in from the expanse of the Atlantic what came with it was a definite sense of excitement along with a fair deal of apprehension. The now legendary Villager 1st team bus rolled aside Hamiltons FC carrying 22 focussed Villager men who knew that they were without doubt in for the game of their lives.
It was a pity that a game of this magnitude had to be disrupted with a laundry list of injuries and suspensions from what must be said was an ageing week for the Villager coaching staff. With these unfortunate circumstances in mind the players that were selected to replace the regulars are quality in their own right and it was was a great test of their attrition and skills.
The game kicked off and Village got off to a promising start which led to a scrum penalty which was neatly slotted by Daniel Clarke to take the lead by 3. What happened from the next kick –off onwards was a serious “welcome back to the SLA” from a fired up Hamiltons outfit.
Hammies dominated in all facets of the game and in many ways taught the Villager youngsters a lesson or two about what it takes to compete at the top of the SLA. The intensity, speed, professionalism and structure displayed by the 3rd best club rugby side in the country (and on many days some would say the best) was at another level and seemed to be an eye opener for many.
With all this said however Villager, by their own account, were by no means good on the night and allowed Hammies to do as they wish in most departments. The Brooksiders struggled at set phase losing the majority of their own lineout and scrum ball and to top this off were blown away at ruck time by an organised Hammies outfit.
To compound the Brooksiders woes, their own constant handling errors and intercepts gifted the home side well over half their tries. One cannot expect to win in the SLA when tries are gifted as easily as they were on Friday night.
Stand out performers for the home side included recent recruit Jason Marcus at scrumhalf, who revelled against his old club scoring a hat trick of tries before half time. His speed at the breakdown was exceptional and was made that much easier behind a pack, led by the experienced Jody Burch, which dominated the physical exchanges for almost the entirety of the game.
On the Villager side Hooker, Sicko Langa, took his opportunity of his first starting cap for the 1st team with both hands as he displayed pure guts and aggression with a number of bustling and aggressive runs. His performance was backed up by a tireless Brent Wienandt (Lock) who also never gave up and tried his best to dominate collisions. Stu Pattison (Fullback), who was moved from centre on Friday morning due to an injury to James Allderman, had a great game at the back was finally awarded the Villager man-of-the-match award for his efforts.
Head Coach Gunner Hughes acknowledged Hamiltons were far superior on the day.
“I think we got a rude awakening this evening, but it was not entirely unexpected if one looks at last years Derby Day result and you take into account they have already played in the Community Cup, (placed 3rd), and have beaten all comers thus far by big margins.” He says
“As a club we are still very much in a re-building phase, although we will never go out onto the park and expect a loss, we understand where we are right now and can only look to improve and will need to do so quickly as we face SK Walmers and UCT on Saturday and Wednesday.” He says
When pressed about his sides unforced error rate Hughes admitted his side where often their own worst enemies.
“Without taking anything away from the Hammies win, I do think that the amount of tries we gifted them has inflated the score board somewhat. They did score some superb and well worked tries, but take away the silly errors which cost us hugely and the score board may well have been different. It is something we will have to seriously look at if we consider we gifted Tygerberg their opening try last weekend.” He said.
Villager FC would like to congratulate Hamiltons on their win and wish them all the best moving forward. we next face Hamiltons for Derby Day at the Steven Oval on 20 June.
Villager will now look to this weekends clash against SK Walmers at home on Saturday.
Penalty: Daniel Clarke
Tries: Marcus x 3 , Van Zyl x 2 , Gerber x 1 , Du Plessis x 2, Burch x 1 , Lewis x 1
Conversions: Monty Dumond x 6