Cape Town - UKZN-Impi displayed just why they are the Varsity Shield champions, when they defeated UWC 24-13 in a fiercely contested encounter at the UWC Sports Stadium on Monday evening.
With both sides coming to the match with four points each, the clash had all the ingredients of a top-of-the-table encounter with action aplenty.
UKZN took the match to the home side from the onset, pushing UWC onto the back foot and forcing them to commit errors. And when UWC right flank, Sabelo Dlamini was sent to the Afkoelstoel, the visitors took advantage of the extra man. Zwela Zondi dotted down and Tristan Tedder converted to give them an early 8-0 lead going to the first strategy break.
But the home side were not to be outdone infront of their near-capacity full cheering crowd and, following a persisting push, Jason Marcus reduced the deficit to three points when he scored a try as UKZN led by 8-5 at half time.
Whatever Chester Williams told his charges in the dressing room seemed to work as UWC came back firing on all cylinders in the second half, and it didn’t take them long before touching down through Marcus Kleinbooi. Melikhaya Aubrey Wana converted to give his side a 13-8 lead.
The game seemed balanced in possession and territory with errors costing the home side. Kerron van Vuuren put UKZN back into the lead and Tedder made no mistake to take the scores to 16-13 going to the second strategy break.
The game heated up in the dying moments and could have gone either way, but UKZN had the last say when S’busiso Nkosi intercepted the ball and ran half the length of the field to score a brilliant try. Tedder made it three out of three and the game ended at 24-13 to UKZN.
15 Marcus Kleinbooi, 14 Minenhle Mthethwa, 13 Dean Herbert, 12 Ruan Mostert, 11 Byron Burgess, 10 Aubrey Wana Melikhaya, 9 Jason Marcus, 8 Matthew Faught, 7 Sabelo Dlamini, 6 Philbrey Joseph ©, 5 Brandon Valentyn, 4 Stuart Austin, 3 Kelvin De Bruyn, 2 Peter Karia Wanjiru, 1 Wayron Losper
16 Brandon-Lee Beukman, 17 Robin Paulse, 18 Matthew Le Roux, 19 Darren Luiters, 20 Matthew Nortje, 21 Courtney Cupido, 22 Darian Hock, 23 Keenan Garth Douw
15 Morne Joubert, 14 S’busiso Nkosi, 13 Grant Rattray, 12 Marius Louw, 11 Thobekani Buthelezi, 10 Tristan Tedder, 9 Willem Badenhorst, 8 Zwela Zondi, 7 Kerron Van Vuuren, 6 Sanele Malwane, 5 Adam Wessels, 4 Rikus Zwart, 3 John-hubert Meyer, 2 Mikyle Webster, 1 Andrew Acton
16 Elrch Kankowski, 17 Pierre van der Walt, 18 Chrstiaan van der Merwe, 19 Michael Meyer, 20 Langelihle Shange, 21 Siphathisene Dube, 22 Tristan Blewett, 23 Lindokuhle Radebe