|08:00||Sat 19Mar||Kempton Park II||8||21||Boland Landbou II|
|09:15||Sat 19Mar||Waterkloof II||27||31||Paarl Gimnasium II|
|10:30||Sat 19Mar||Garsfontein II||7||28||Outeniqua II|
|11:45||Sat 19Mar||Menlopark II||15||24||Stellenberg II|
|13:00||Sat 19Mar||Kempton Park||10||69||Boland Landbou|
|14:30||Sat 19Mar||Waterkloof||10||35||Paarl Gimnasium|
|09:30||Tue 22Mar||Kempton Park II||Stellenberg II|
|10:45||Tue 22Mar||Menlopark II||Boland Landbou II|
|12:00||Tue 22Mar||Waterkloof II||Outeniqua II|
|13:15||Tue 22Mar||Garsfontein II||Paarl Gimnasium II|
|14:30||Tue 22Mar||Kempton Park||14||47||Stellenberg|
|16:00||Tue 22Mar||Menlopark||10||50||Boland Landbou|
|19:00||Tue 22Mar||Garsfontein||15||13||Paarl Gimnasium|
The Noord-Suid Festival may have had a humble beginning in 2014 but 2016 looks like it will be the defining year that establishes the event as a highlight of the schoolboy rugby season. For the first time, the festival will have a strong Noord versus Suid feel about it as more top rugby schools from both regions have bought into the concept.
The 1st XV and 2nd XV of eight top schools are set to take part in 2016.
The schools signed up for the two-day festival which will take place at Garsfontein High School in Pretoria on 19 & 22 March 2016 are:
The the unique advantages that Noord-Suid now holds over most other Easter festivals are as follows:
1) Only two match days
2) An extra rest day between matches
3) 2nd XV’s playing at the same venue
It’s clear that player welfare is high up on the priority list.
Match Day 1 Reports
Boland Landbou 69-10 Kempton Park
Boland Landbou wear black and during this match they played like the All Blacks. The well-structured, well drilled team from just outside Paarl produced a high standard of play. It was a very impressive performance for this early in the team’s season. At the end of the match flank Athi Magwala was named Man of the Match (MOTM) but in truth the adjudicator could have pull any one of 15 Boland Landbou names out of a hat and there would have been plenty of good things to say about that player’s effort. Big inside centre Henro Marais was in devastating form. He proved hard to bring down when he carried, he distributed well and showed he is no slouch on defence either. Scrumhalf Deon Carstens (no relation to the assistant coach and former Bok prop with the exact same name) showed why he is arguably the best under-18 halfback in SA this year. The left wing Durin Nasson looked really good. He is a decent sized player with plenty of gas and good footwork. He scored four tries and his time on the ball characterized a player with talent. Things went so well for BL that even their composed, creative goal kicking flyhalf Duren Hoffman looked like played in the position for all of his high school career, yet he was the wing covering for the missing first choice number 10. In the pack apart from the brilliance of Magwala, hooker Francois Bruwer’s lineout work was top notch while blindside flank Kevin Reed was prominent.
It was obvious a very bad day at the office for the Kempton Park, the Valke region team. Kempies have enjoyed their fair share of Noordvaal success in recent seasons but this year’s team looks to be a weaker one and their results are starting to back this up. They struggled to get far on attack as they had no spark but did manage to score a late try via a rolling maul. They could not bring the required intensity on defence. BL were afforded too much room and didn’t make enough mistakes to keep Kempies in with a chance of a respectable scoreline.
Paarl Gim 35-10 Waterkloof
The first half of this game was an awesome contest. Gim has a monster sized pack and it seemed like Klofies were going to need all the help they could get. However not only was size against them, a yellow card issued at virtually the first contact, reduced the Pretoria powerhouse to 14 players. Muller du Plessis, the uber-exciting young prospect at fullback for Gim opened the scoring. He has toe plus the lateral ability to get by the first tackler and his joining of the line at pace was a standout feature of this match. His try was made by another top prospect Muller Uys (no.8) crashing up the middle and providing the platform for quick ball with the Gim right wing took full advantage of to make the hard yards and feed du Plessis. Unlike Kempies, Klofies looked really psyched upped. They got points via a penalty after they brought down the massive lock Adriaan Ludick who must surely weight in the region of 130kg and came up with a useful counter-ruck. The kick by WK’s flyhalf was an excellent one, over 50m long from the corner, outside leg. As the half went on Kloof started to gain in strength. Although they didn’t look like they had special attacking threats in the backline, amongst the forward there were several very committed ballcarriers. The entire backrow as well as the loosehead prop looked enthusiastic with ball in hand. Waterkloof got into the redzone and eventually turned the possession and territory into points when their hooker was able to dive over at the side of a ruck close to the line.
At halftime Gim looked to be in a spot of bother. They were 7-10 down, looking lethargic and with Kloof having the match fitness of playing more games than Gim this season coupled with the altitude, it looked like the Noord team was all set to dominate the second half. The exact opposite happened though. Whatever was said to Gim at the break, it worked. First their scrummy dived over for a try after early pressure. Shortly after the kickoff, Muller du Plessis joined the line and glided through a gap. He had the chance to return the favour to his right wing who was free on the outside but held on and was well tackled about 10m out from the tryline. The opportunity looked lost but was saved when flyhalf Wian van Zyl who was following up as a support runner on the inside line collected the pop pass off the ground from the tackled player. Within a short space of time after halftime the score was 21-10. About 8-minutes later the contest was over when Klofies lost their own lineout inside their 22. A quick reaction to this turnover saw the flying inside centre Theo Boshoff pick the right line and received a well-timed pass to breach the defence. Boshoff was deservedly named MOTM. He was sublime. He’s not the heaviest centre around but he has height and looks very skillful plus he’s a goalkicker. It looked like Waterkloof had been rattled in the second half. They struggled to come up with frontfoot ball were not composed. It was pity after they took the game to Gim in the first half using physicality. The final Gim try was the product of a handling error by Klofies near their own tryline. Gim controlled the scrum wheel to produce a favourable angle on the left, which Wian van Zyl took advantage of to run into the space that opened up. Klofies had a couple of opportunities to grow their score late in the game. After forcing an error, their flyhalf hacked the ball ahead and the footrace to get to the ball in-goal first was just-just won by Gim’s left wing. Then Klofies no.22 chipped over the D-line and collected to create a chance. Their fullback then had a good long run but his pass let him down, when it was on.
Garsfontein 35-24 Outeniqua
The classic game of two halves played out here but what a game! Garsies have a tall and heavy pack. Of all the Noord teams on display, Garsies were the only one’s with backs capable of matching the Western Cape backs ability to handle at pace and work the gaps out wide.
With Garsies leading 3-0, one of the standout players of the match, the blitzvinnige Kwaggas left wing had a chance to make something of a turnover deep inside his own half. He was stopped by a brill last line of defence cover-tackle by the home team’s flyhalf Austin Davids. It was surprising to see Garsies attack use the chip over the top to try and get something from the favourable bounce instead of keeping ball in hand.
Garsfontein extended their lead when they used a good scrum effort backed up by quality running and flat passes at pace to allow their outside centre Lincoln Daniels to score a “let the ball do the talking” try. 10-0 became 13-0 after Davids slotted a side entry awarded penalty. Two poor attempted exits by Outeniqua paved the way for the next try. Embrose Papier, the talented Garsies’ two year SA Schools scrumhalf showed off one of his many attributes – his pace when he sniped and crossed the white chalk. 20-0 became 25-0 when Garsies SA Schools “A” player Abner van Reenen, a well-built player who is under-18 this year, scored. The try was the combination of a well-executed lineout to the tail and smart change of direction set play off it, which again saw Papier influential with the critical pass that van Reenen was able to run onto and dissect defenders. It was a clinical first half performance by the home team.
By halftime, it really looked like this match was heading for a classification as a shock of the season. A big hiding looked assured as school from George had few answers to Garfontein’s irresistible form. The Kwaggas tactics looked all wrong. They were trying to match Garsies up front and being outmuscled.
There is plenty of fighting spirit in the Outeniqua team and this was evident after the break. They began to moved the ball round better. Soon they were rewarded when their no.8 scored. This was followed by a try from their scrumhalf. As wild or unorthodox as some of the passes were in the move that led to this try, it was a wonderful passage of continuity to watch unfold, as it showed a real appreciate for operating at an attack at speed.
Then Outeniqua scored their third try to reduce at 0-25 gap all the way down to just 21-25. No player on the park was more deserving of a try than JP Duvenage, who would go on to win MOTM. He took on a great deal of responsibity and was outstanding, particularly at busting through tackles and getting over the advantage line. Here were a few things that didn’t work out here and there but overall he deserved a 9.5/10 for his contribution. This third Kwaggas try that he scored showed off his strength on his feet as he collected a ball near the line and power passed would-be tacklers. The Kwaggas no.7 also put his body on the line for his team.
Full marks to Garsfontein for making a recovery. The game appeared to have been turned on it’s head. Garsies structure and focus no longer looked great but they were able to pull themselves out of the hole. An exchange of penalties moved the score to 28-24. The hosts then had chances to grow the lead. They missed a penalty shot at goal and a bit of Papier magic saw him take off down the blindside show, kick ahead and come close to scoring a try. In the dying minutes, the Kwaggas tried to launch an attack from virtual on their own line. For once Duvenage was stopped in his tracks by a good tackle. The ball went lose and Davids first toed it past the defenders before gathering it to score his team’s fourth try and seal the victory.
This game was way way closer than the final score suggests. It was a very good contest between two evenly matched teams. The Durbanville team raced ahead compliments of a try from their scrummy who is a strong ball-carrier. They had a 13-3 lead at one stage. Like all three Cape A-teams that played before them, Stellies knew how to run ball, breach the first line defence and gain large chunks of ground. Menlo’s downfall in this match was that getting the ball wide did not come naturally to them. When Menlo came up with one outstanding top class handling move towards the end of the first half, which saw the ball move quickly through the hands in the redzone, it allowed their left wing Ruben Fleischauer to use the space on the outside and score in the corner, making it 13-8.
In the second half the Pretoria team’s flyhalf Werner Nel made an excellent linebreak, backed himself to go all the way and completed a superb individual effort to level matters at 13-13.
Stellenberg were down to 13 players following two yellow cards but Menlo somehow could not take advantage and their decision making and tactics during this passage must have raised a few questions.
13-13 became 16-16 in a tense exciting contest that had the spectators glued to their seats.
There were chances at both ends. Stellies turned theirs into 3-points to regain the lead. Then a critical moment followed towards the end. A penalty was reversed. Up stepped Stellenberg’s hero of the evening, the ace goal-kicker Ruben Scholtz, who’s timing of place kicks was impeccable. Another good strike saw Stellenberg out to a 22-16 lead.
Menlopark crossed the line for a try but it was called back for a knock-on at the lineout on the 22. Menlo then won a penalty for sealing and set up a lineout just 5 out from the tryline. The golden opportunity was wasted. A poor throw-in resulted in a turnover and was followed by a Stellenberg penalty on their own line soon afterwards.
With the help of an exit, Stellenberg worked their way up the field where Menlo conceded a final penalty at the ruck. Scholtz scored his 20th point of the match to confirm the victory.