Nelspruit - The Pumas ended the Boland Cavaliers' hopes of a semi-final place with a 44-21 (half-time 20-7) win in their Absa Currie Cup First Division match at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Saturday.
According to the supersport.com website, the Cavaliers began the penultimate week of this year’s competition in fifth place and needed a win to keep their slim semi-final hopes alive.
However, they were up against a Pumas outfit which has remained unbeaten this year and the hosts ran in seven tries to move to 13 wins from 13 matches.
Fullback Danwell Dames ran in a brace of tries for the Pumas while flyhalf Carl Bezuidenhout garnered 14 points courtesy of a try, three conversions and a penalty.
The Pumas had left out a host of first choice players with their position at the top of the log secured for the play-off portion of the competition but they needed just two minutes before opening their account with Dames dotting down for his first try.
Bezuidenhout kicked a ninth minute penalty before Dames completed his brace when he zipped over in the 17th minute.
The Cavaliers finally opened their account, in the 24th minute, when inside centre Braam Gerber crossed for a converted try but the hosts made sure of a handy 20-7 half-time lead when lock Rudi Mathee crashed over for a try with 11 minutes left in the half.
The Pumas grabbed their bonus-point try just two minutes after the restart when Bezuidenhout dotted down to effectively seal the contest.
The hosts added three more tries, through scrumhalf Reynier van Rooyen, flank and Uzair Cassiem and left wing Willie Loock, while Boland managed two tries of their own in the second-half with scrumhalf Lucky Kebe and replacement fullback Brendon April both breaching the stern Pumas’ defence.
Steval Pumas – Tries: Danwell Demas (2), Rudi Mathee, Carl Bezuidenhout, Reynier van Rooyen, Uzair Cassiem, Willie Loock; Conversions: Bezuidenhout (3); Penalty: Bezuidenhout.
Boland Cavaliers – Tries: Braam Gerber, Lucky Kebe, Brendon April; Conversions: Len Olivier (2), Eric Zana.