Johannesburg - Duwayne Smart grabbed a brace of tries as a dominant second-half display from the SWD Eagles lifted the side to a 46-17 (half time 6-10) victory in their South Section Vodacom Cup encounter with the Regent Boland Cavaliers in Swellendam on Saturday.
A low-key first period left the Eagles trailing by four points at the break, and with 15 minutes remaining, they held a slender 18-17 lead in what had been a hard-fought clash upfront.
The home side, however, were rampant in those final minutes as they ran in a further four tries to seal a comfortable bonus-point win that lifts them to second place in the South Section standings, while the winless Cavaliers remain rooted to the foot of the table having yet to register a point.
Things began steadily enough for the visitors, as neither side showed signs of buckling in some intense opening exchanges. Fullback Eric Zana's 17th-minute penalty provided the first points of the match, although Karlo Aspeling cancelled it out on the half-hour mark with a three-pointer of his own.
Substitute Christian Rust scored after being on the field for just two minutes, and although Aspeling added a penalty on the stroke of half time, the Cavaliers took a precious 10-6 lead into the interval.
Smart and Shaun Raubenheimer then crossed the whitewash shortly after the players returned to rejuvenate the somewhat tepid Eagles, but Tiaan Radyn's 57th-minute score narrowed the gap to one and put the Cavaliers right back into proceedings.
But it was the home side who ran riot at the death, as tries from Adolf Petzer, Hentzwill Pedro, Grant le Roux and a second for Smart in the final 13 minutes broke Cavalier hearts, as they were left to lament an unflattering 46-17 scoreline by the time the final whistle blew.
SWD Eagles: Tries: Duwayne Smart (2), Shaun Raubenheimer, Adolf Petzer, Hentzwill Pedro, Grant le Roux; Conversions: Karlo Aspeling (4), Deroy Rhoode; Penalties: Karlo Aspeling (2).
Boland Cavaliers: Tries: Christian Rust, Tiaan Radyn; Conversions: Eric Zana (2); Penalties: Eric Zana.