(Photo Credit: Herman Whatney/Speedshots.co.za)
After a super exciting first day of the 2019 Wildeklawer Festival, one does wonder if day two can come close? It will be very difficult to duplicate the excitement provided in the game between Noord Kaap and Helpmekaar but a game between the two leading 1stXV's in the country will bring its own excitement and passion on the field.
18:30 Waterkloof 38-5 Diamantveld
There could not be a more evenly matched game than this one planned. Diamantveld would certainly be on a high after the Stellenberg game although they did lose (19-22) but showed they are good enough to compete at the top. Waterkloof will also be confident as the margin of their victory against Welkom Gym (20-39) was a big surprise. Waterkloof, however, will be tested up front and in the fight for the loose ball and if they cannot at least secure 40% possession they will be on the losing side. Expect a brutal first 20 - 30 minutes with the winning team taking control thereafter. Who will win? I do not know if Cinderella is waiting somewhere in Kimberley but Diamantveld's coach Jaco Dames' words before the Stellenberg game is still very fresh in my memory "It is never easy in Kimberley and we are going to make it even more difficult than the norm?"
Diamantveld maybe just the better team in the first half and 20 minutes was played there still was no score. A match played at a very fast pace with defence not always on the mind of the boys, however, the tackles that stopped the tries were sometimes spectacular. Waterkloof scored the only points of the first half and lead 12-00 at the break.
Waterkloof dominating the first 15 minutes of the second half and extending their lead to 19-0. Both sides were only interested in attacking during the last minutes of the second half with Waterkloof definately the better at attack and won 38-5 in an exciting match.
Diamantveld: Try: Harding
Waterkloof: Tries: Langa, Smit, Melamed, Groenwald, du Randt, Cory Conversion: Trollip, Melamed (3)
17:20 Outeniqua 50-07 Noord Kaap
Outeniqua was brutally demolished by Grey College (7-64) but so will many other teams be during 2019. To try and judge Outeniqua's abilities in a game against Grey will be very misleading and I do think that Outeniqua is not a bad team at all. If Outeniqua uses their massive forwards to deny Noord Kaap ball for their backline this could ensure a happy bus trip home. Helpmekaar showed against Noord Kaap that Noord Kaap is vulnerable when being attacked up front and deprived of the ball, therefore if Outeniqua does play a forward-based game this could become an easy win for them. However, ........... phone Helpmekaar to assist with trauma counselling.
Outeniqua used their big forwards to keep the ball from the dangerous backs from Noor Kaap, using their big forwards forward's momentum to attack from to good effect. Outeniqua lead 21-0 at half time. The second half carried on in the same manner as the first with Outeniqua dominating possession and territory scoring tries at regular intervals.
Outeniqua: Tries: Nortje, Michaels (2), Volschenk (2), Coetzee, Pieterse, Ackerman Conversions: Thorne (5)
Noord Kaap: Try: Daniels Conversion: Fredericks
16:10 Paarl Gim 33-47 Grey College
This could be the title decider for 2019. Both teams are playing a very structured game using their time to throttle all life out of their opponents before tearing them apart. Expect a chess game played on a rugby field where individual brilliance will be sacrificed for the good of the team, expect some brilliant backline play with big hits and brutal encounters up front.
Personally, I do not care who wins and is just thankful that I will be next to the field.
Paarl Gim dominated proceedings in the early part of the first half and although scored the first try to take the lead with 5-0 one never had the feeling that Grey was in control. After Gim scored following a driving maul Grey College backline exploded scoring 2 long distance tries to resume their lead with 19-07. The latter part of the first half saw both teams attacking with intent and the half time score of 26-12 a fair reflection of the match.
Paarl Gim started the second half as they did with the first half but scored almost immediately after the kickoff to cut Grey's lead to 26-19. thereafter, Grey stepped on the gas and every time their backline touched the ball they scored a spectacular time but admittingly, every time I was ready to write them off they answered with a great try of their own. Gim spent most of the last 10 minutes in the half of Grey College but great defence by Grey kept them from scoring the winning points. A try by Grey in the final seconds of the game put the result beyond any doubt
A great chess game played by two of the superpowers in SA schoolboy rugby
Grey College: Tries: Odendaal, du Plessis, Sokoyi, Venter, Wessels, Small-Smith, Muller Conversion: Oliver (6)
Paarl Gim: Tries: Sieberts, van Niekerk, Alexander, Compion, James Conversions: Smal (4)
15:00 Paarl Boishaai 39-12 Affies
One of two games that will have everybody streaming through the gates on day two with the annual "derby" between two of the giants of schoolboy rugby. Boishaai must be the favourites after their power display against Glenwood (55-7) yesterday. Affies again "struggled" against a determined Drostdy HTS (38-22) who kept their mistakes to a minimum almost neutralising the Affies dangerous counter attacks from spilt ball in the loose.
Expect a titanic battle with both teams upping their play with another 25% for each other.
Boishaai scored an unanswered 22 points in the first half scoring almost at will against a seemingly lacklustre Affies team. A complete effort by Boishaai in the first half leading 29-00 with an Affies side who looks to be still on the bus. Unfortunately, the bus' door got stuck and could only be opened with only 10 minutes to go. During the last 10 minutes, Affies camped in the 22 of Boishaai but forgot the braai wood on the bus which concerned them more than their opponents.
Affies: Tries: du Toit, Barkhuizen Conversions: v Aswegen
Boishaai: Tries: Oche, Horn (2), Roussouw, Meadon Conversions: Meadon (4) Penalty: Meadon (2)
13:50 Glenwood 24-39 Garsfontein
Glenwood's game against Boishaai (7-55) was one of the disappointments of day one and unfortunately, I can not see them coming even close to beating Garsfontein.
Glenwood's efforts in the first 20 minutes not only kept Garsfontein from dominating as everybody expected, but it must be said that Glenwood dominated the first 15 minutes. Garsfontein was happy to defend for the initial period and started to find gaps in Glenwood's defence to lead 17-10 at halftime. The game definately not decided yet although Garsfontein deserves the slender lead at half time.
A titanic battle in the second half with both sides giving their all and both taking turns to score some great tries. However, Garsfontein scored two late tries in 5 minutes to win with 39-24 but the scoreboard definitely not reflecting the effort of Glenwood at all.
Glenwood: Tries: Slabbert, Thinyone, Smit Conversions: Hendrikse (3) Penalties: Hendrikse
Garsfontein: Tries: Strydom, Terblanche, Olckers, Deysel, Roets, Johnson, Sadie Conversions: Basson, Olckers
12:40 Oakdale 10-32 Menlopark
Oakdale showed against Garsfontein (7-31) that they are good enough to compete against any of the top teams and with some work on their decision making at crucial moments in the match could see them ending the season as one of the better teams in South Africa. Menlopark showed in their match against Framesby (21-29) that they are very dangerous with the ball in hand but are vulnerable against a team that can dominate them up front. This could be one of the more exciting games of the day with the two teams both able to play exciting games, anyone's game?
Both sides running with everything they can lay their hands on with Menlopark racing into the lead with 10-3 whereafter Oakdale struck back to level the score at 10-10. Menlopark scored an unanswered 19 points in the latter period of the first half to lead 29-10 and was seemingly on their way to the first big win of the day.
The whole of the second half it was only Menlo who could score points to win (32-10).
Menlopark: Tries: Potgieter, Beukes, Balloy, Deysel Conversions: Deysel (3) Penalty: Deysel (2)
Oakdale: Tries: vd Linde Conversions: vd Linde Penalty: vd Linde
11:30 Welkom Gim 26-43 Stellenberg
Welkom Gim did lose in a hard fought battle against Waterkloof (20-39) and I do believe that their obsession to attack at all costs will cost them even more than against Stellenberg. Stellenberg had a very close call against Diamantveld (19-22) and although Diamantveld did put them under severe pressure Stellenberg stuck to their gameplan and even more important they believed in it, a sign of a well-coached team. Stellenberg is according to some overplayed, but they will come back and should win this. But it will be close.
Welkom Gim enjoyed territorial and possession advantage in the first 20 minutes of the game but Stellenberg scored almost every time they entered the 22 of Welkom Gim. Although Welkom Gim did put Stellenberg under a lot of pressure Stellenberg absorbed everything thrown at them and showed a lot of patience in attack, a sign of a very good team being coached brilliantly. Stellenberg in the lead by 21-7 at half time with the score flattering them a bit.
Welkom Gim was awarded a penalty try at the end of the first half and scored the first try of the second half to narrow the gap to 26-14 with 20 minutes to go in the second half. Welkom Gim scored a further two long-distance tries to narrow the gap to 29-26 with Stellenberg in the lead. With a minute to go Stellenberg came to life and scored two converted tries to win with 43-26. The scoreboard flattering Stellenberg at the end especially after Gim's performance in the second half.
Stellenberg: Tries: vd Westhuizen, Rose, Hadlow, Pienaar, Petersen Conversions: Petersen (4)
Welkom Gim: Tries: Penalty trie, Morabe, April, Human Conversion: Andrews, Human
10:20 Framesby 18-17 Helpmekaar
Framesby showed in their win against Menlopark (29-21) that their forwards can dominate while they also have some exciting backs. To win Helpmekaar who lost to Noord Kaap (33-34) Framesby will have to dominate up front ensuring that Helpmekaars brilliant backline does get as little ball as possible. Although Helpmekaar was beaten in the back by the brilliant Noord Kaap's backline I do not see it happening any time soon again. Helpmekaar should win this one as they should have won last night also, therefore ............
After 20 minutes on the clock, Helpmekaar was leading 3-0 in a match where Helpmekaar tried to speed up the game t0 take the big forwards of Framesby out of the game. Helpmekaar was in the lead with 17-05 at halftime in a much that was very much a stop-start affair with Helpmekaar's lead of 12 points a true reflection
The second half's first points were scored after 15 minutes with Framesby maybe just getting the upper hand. Framesby set up camp in the 22 of Helpmekaar for a good 10 minutes late in the first half with only desperate defence from Helpmekaar preventing Framesby from scoring. With 5 minutes left on the clock, the pressure put on Helmekaar by Framesby paid off and they scored a converted try to narrow the score to 15-17 with Helmekaar absorbing a lot of pressure.
Framesby converted a penalty with two minutes left on the clock to win 18-17, deservedly.
Framesby: Tries: Prince, Moffat Conversion: Liebenberg Penalties: Liebenberg (2)
Helpmekaar: Tries: Botes, Bezuidenhout Conversions: Botes (2) Penalty: Botes
09:10 Monnas 28-20 Drostdy HTS
Drostdy HTS showed in their loss against Affies (22-38) that although they are not having a great season that they still are good enough to scare some of the top dogs. They do play a "conservative" style of rugby using their good forwards to slow the game down and provide the quality ball to their backs. However, Monnas pack of forwards will match Drostdy HTS' best efforts with ease and then their abilities with the ball in hand are well known. Monnas win against Boland Landbou (42-33) showed that they are one of the top teams in 2019 South Africa and if they play the same calibre of game tomorrow Drostdy HTS is going to have a bad day at the office, a very bad day.
As expected the first ten minutes was a brutal affair with both packs of forwards even using the kitchen sink. With 15 minutes left on the clock, it was clear that the forwards of Monnas started to take control giving their backs more than enough quality ball to attack with which they did to lead 28-06 with 15 minutes to go. Then, as they did against Boland Landbou Monnas relaxed their effort up front allowing Drostdy HTS to get their hands on the ball resulting in Drostdy HTS looking a lot better and reducing the deficit to 13-28 which was also the score at halftime.
The first 20 minutes was a bit of a dull affair with the ice cream vendor attracting more attention than the game on the field. Drostdy HTS enjoyed territorial dominance for most of the second half while Monnas was seemingly content to defend their lead. With eight minutes left on the clock Drostdy's flyhalf "scored" a try after visibly knocking the ball to score the only points in the second half. Monnas winning 28-20.
Monnas: Tries: Prinsloo, Goodman, van Wyk, de Klerk Conversions: Wentlink (4)
Drostdy HTS: Tries: le Roux, Peterson Conversions: Mostert (2) Penalties: Mostert, Peterson
08:00 Transvalia 15-59 Boland Landbou
Boland Landbou scored the last 21 points in their game against Monnas (33-42) and showed that even after being dominated for 55 minutes they still had the chutzpah to come back as soon as the littlest chance appears. Transvalia however, was humiliated in a game that was stopped before the time by a brutal Paarl Gim (7-73) and unfortunately, I can not see them coming back from that hiding to come even close in beating Boland Landbou.
Transvalia definitely took note of the fact that Boland Landbou is vulnerable when taken on up front and that is what kept Transvalia in the game during the first half. The halftime score was 25-10 and unfortunately, the pace of Boland Landbou's attack is starting to finding gaps in Transvalia's defensive structures.
Unfortunately for Transvalia, the Boland Landbou's attack became more effective in the second half but Transvalia were never disgraced at all.
Transvalia: Tries: Lundie (2), du Plessis
Boland Landbou: Tries: du Plessis, Smuts (2), Fourie, Moodie, Grobbelaar, Olivier, Wentzel, Smith Conversions: Wentzel (7)