Youth Weeks continue to thrill in Johannesburg and Bloemfontein

Posted on Thursday, 19 Jun 2019

Youth Weeks continue to thrill in Johannesburg and Bloemfontein

Thrilling rugby action was again at the order of the day in Johannesburg and Bloemfontein, where the SA Rugby Youth Weeks continued for a second day at Jeppe High School and Sentraal High School. 

The SA Rugby Under-18 Girls Week kicked off today, following a successful start to the Under-16’s on Monday, while only three teams remains undefeated in Bloemfontein after a second round of matches at the Learners with Special Education Needs (LSEN) Week. 

Only DHL Western Province, SWD and the Golden Lions are undefeated following a second day of high-scoring action in the Free State capital, where 54 tries were added to the 61 scored on Monday.

The LSEN Week have a rest day on Wednesday and the final round of matches will be played on Thursday. 

There was some stunning rugby delivered at Jeppe Boys High School in the Under-18 Girls Week, with a number of teams showing good skills and intent. The rest day tomorrow will be well received after some bruising encounters, with the SA Rugby Under-16 Girls Week continuing at the same venue.

LSEN Week Day two review

The Golden Lions kept their clean slate intact with a well-deserved 38-12 win over the Pumas on day two of LSEN Week in Bloemfontein.  The Gauteng side had control of the match from the start, leading 26-7 at the break and crossing the Pumas line six times. 

Three of those came from hard-running centre, Mendes Vengu, while winger Tshepang Selelane dotted down twice.

The Pumas could not sustain their effort that saw them past Free State yesterday and were playing catch-up rugby from the start.

The Gauteng XV side had their flags lowered by Eastern Province, who scored a 25-17 win to register their first victory in Bloemfontein. It was a hard-fought affair with a brace by No 8 Gregan Williams edging the Eastern Cape side home. 

The half-time score was only 13-10 to EP, but they played with more purpose in the second half and deserved the win. 

Both the Sharks and Golden Lions EE were keen to rebound following big losses on Monday, and it was the Gauteng side who came out tops in this encounter. In fact, they dominated their coastal opponents and won 37-5, leading 22-0 at the break. 

Their dominance is best illustrated by the seven tries to one they managed over the Sharks, who have found the going pretty tough so far in the Free State capital.

The Leopards were pretty unlucky on Monday, being edged by the Golden Lions, and they came back with a bang today, scoring eight tries against the Free State Cheetahs to post a solid 53-24 win. 

Miquel Engelbrecht (No 8) was again busy and scored a hat-trick of tries, while Lesego Seikaneng (scrumhalf) and Tshwanelo Batshe (fullback) each grabbed two five pointers in a strong second-half showing. 

For the home side, two tries from No 8, Tsekiso Makhele, gave them early hope and the Bloem boys were still leading 19-13 at the break before they were overwhelmed in the second stanza.

Penalties kicks were far and few this week, but the two kicked by Blue Bulls flyhalf, Luan Gouws, proved to be decisive in their close-fought match against Boland. 

Both sides scored two tries, with the two Gouws efforts the difference in the 18-14 win for the Pretoria team. They held a slender 8-7 lead and with Gouws also converting centre Jaco Nel’s try, the gap proved to be wide enough for their first win. 

DHL Western Province delivered another strong performance to keep their undefeated status going, this time beating Griffons 48-17. The Cape side scored seven tries, three of those in the first half for a 21-3 lead at the break. 

The Griffons managed two tries in the second half to the four of their opponents, including a brace by prop Rique Harmse and No 8, Dimitri Gossmann. 

The clash between SWD and Valke delivered the spectacle it promised as the two undefeated teams tried to outplay each other. There was another big performance from Keano Brown, the SWD stand-out centre, with the points-machine scored two of his side’s five tries. The star of the show though was No 8, Ashley Guide, who dotted down three times in the 29-17 win. 

At halftime, the teams were still tied at 10-10, but the playmakers in the SWD side prevailed and they finished undefeated after two outings. 

LSEN results day two:

Leopards 53-24 Free State Cheetahs

Golden Lions EE 37-5 Sharks

EP Elephants 25-17 Gauteng XV

Golden Lions 38-12 Pumas

Blue Bulls 18-14 Boland

DHL Western Province 48-17 Griffons

SWD 29-17 Valke

SA Rugby U18 Girls Week wrap

Border started their tournament with a bang by claiming a convincing 38-12 triumph win over Limpopo Blue Bulls in their opening match of the 2019 Week in Johannesburg.

Flanker Andiswe Mbilase and centre Aphelele Nchukana both scored a brace each as the Eastern Cape side outscored the Limpopo side by six tries to two. The first half was pretty tight as Border were restricted to just two tries for a 12-0 lead, but they scored four more in the second half, while conceding two themselves.

The Free State claimed a 27-17 win over Pumas in a tight affair. The Bloem side held a 10-5 lead at the interval and eventually outscored their opponents by five tries to three, however, they made it difficult from themselves by earning no less than three yellow cards during the match. 

In the end, a good team performance helped them along, with the Pumas banking on the power of prop Kamu Mokoena, who scored two tries.

The Blue Bulls looked impressive in their 27-5 win over Griquas. The Pretoria side held a 12-0 advantage at halftime with two good tries and although Vianca Boer (centre) pulled one back for Griquas, a brace by midfielder Sharlean Netshandama eased the Blue Bulls into a deserving win. 

Tournament hosts, Bidvest Waltons Golden Lions, did not disappoint. They outplayed Griffons 43-0 and scored six tries on their way to a flying start. They managed to build up a 24-0 advantage at the break, with the pace of winger Mardiya Usman a threat throughout, while flyhalf Liela Chammai showed some deft touches and converted three tries. 

The SWD ‘Ea-girls’ team started well this year. They managed a 24-0 success over Border Country Districts, who must be said refused to give up even though they were outplayed. The SWD was 5-0 in front at the break and scored three more tries without reply in the second half. Their flyhalf, Jo-anne Phillips, delivered a stunning performance by, scoring three tries and two conversions for a personal tally of 19 points.

The Boland versus Leopards clash was a tight affair and it was the team from the Winelands who prevailed 15-12 in the end. They looked solid in the opening half which netted them two tries, however, the North West side came back strongly in the latter part of the game to score two tries of their own. 

The solo Boland try in the second half scored through nippy centre, Lee-Ann Tsokotsiyana, proved the difference in the end. 

The DHL Western Province continued with their strong showing in the tournament on Tuesday by beating Eastern Province 17-0 after enjoying halftime 12 -0 in the lead. All three tries came from their flyer Donelle Snyders, who scored twice in the first half and once in the second stanza to bag her hat-trick. Snyders, who is also a South African touch rugby player, displayed her deft touches on many occasions as she left numerous defenders in her wake. 

The final match of the day in Johannesburg proved a good one to end the day with as Zimbabwe outplayed the Sharks 26-12. The visitors from up north had a solid second half display to thank for their efforts. They were up 14-12 at the break, but did not allow the Natal side to score again, while they added two tries of their own and lay down a marker for the rest of the competitors.

SA Rugby U18 Girls Week results:

Border 38-12 Limpopo Blue Bulls

Free State 27-17 Pumas

Bidvest Golden Lions 43-0 Griffons

Blue Bulls 27-5 Griquas

SWD Eagles 24-0 Border Country Districts

Boland 15-12 Leopards

DHL Western Province 17-0 Eastern Province

Zimbabwe 26-12 KwaZulu-Natal 

The SA Rugby U16 Girls Week second round fixtures are:

Wednesday, 19 June

10h00: Free State Cheetahs v Griffons

10h00: Boland v Leopards

11h15: Bidvest Waltons Golden Lions v Pumas

11h15: Griquas v Valke

12h30: SWD Eagles v Sharks

12h30: Blue Bulls v Border CD

13h45: DHL Western Province b Eastern Province

15h00: Border v Limpopo Blue Bulls

Photo Credit: Morgan Piek

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