The closing quarter of match is sometimes all it takes for a powerhouse to turn what otherwise might have been a scoreboard that reflected a good contest into one that looks more like a very easy win. The massive challenge for the coaching staff of the underdogs is to prepare their teams to find something extra in the close to depleted energy reserves to cope defensively with this end of match challenge – not easy.
PAUL ROOS OVERPOWER SACS – report compliments of SACS
The Annual Winter Day weekend, The South African College High School (SACS) against Paul Roos Gimnasium, culminated as usual with the 1stXV Rugby match. After a bitterly cold and wet week the sun came out to greet the players and the match was played in perfect conditions. SACS gave a good account of themselves in an entertaining match but the power of the Paul Roos pack eventually told and the visitors ran out comfortable 42-14 winners (halftime: 14-6)
SACS took an early 3-nil lead thanks to a scrum penalty. Both teams had missed opportunities in the first quarter. Duan Koevort failing to latch onto two difficult passes while Paul Roos twice knocked on with the line at their mercy.
It was during the first twenty minutes where the damage was done for SACS. Too many times they missed touch with their exit kicks and were forced to make a huge number of tackles. This, combined with a heavy field after the week of rain, meant they ran out of legs in the last fifteen minutes when Paul Roos ran in three tries!
It took twenty minutes for Paul Roos to break SACS down. Eventually the wave after wave of attack told and their soon to be SA Schools lock Dylan de Leeuw stretched out and scored. Flyhalf Kade Wolhuter converted.
A brilliant characteristic Koevort counter-attack saw SACS awarded a penalty which flyhalf Nichols Haasbroek converted. With two players off receiving medical attention SACS made a silly error trying to take a quick throw-in on the stroke of halftime. Scrumhalf Xander Botha tapped the free kick and passed to de Leeuw. He ran straight at the SACS replacement players who had just come on and burst through to score another try which Cade Croy converted. This was a crucial score and a killer blow for SACS!
SACS narrowed the gap with another penalty six minutes into the second half. They had a good chance to level the scores when centre Rihaz Fredericks cut the line off first phase. He slipped and the opportunity was lost. An attacking SACS lineout went awry soon after and Paul Roos picked up the loose ball and raced downfield to exert another passage of sustained pressure on SACS. After multiple forward carries eventually prop Joubert Grobbelaar got over. Replacement flyhalf Christiaan van Blommenstein
SACS kept coming though and their man-of-the-match No. 8 Brent van Niekerk set up a try for wing Thomas Doyle to make the score 21-14 with fifteen minutes to play.
From then on it was one-way traffic as the Paul Roos pack took control of proceedings. Paul Roos kicking into gear and looking more like the team that we saw at the World School Festival and who won the SANIX Tournament in Japan earlier this season. They ran in three well worked tries via prop Corne Weilback, No. 8 Andre Smit and wing Andrew Pegg. Van Blommenstein converting all three to rub salt in the wounds of what up until then had been a very brave SACS team.
Try: Thomas Doyle
Penalties: Nicholas Haasbroek (3)
Tries: Dylan de Leeuw (2), Joubert Grobbelaar, Corné Weilbach, André Smit, Andrew Pegg