AFTER last weekend’s half-term break, KZN’s independent schools returned to the rugby fields while the public schools put their feet up this weekend.
Michaelhouse 37-3 St Johns
The Balgowan boys took the traditional trip up to St Johns for their annual clash and managed to continue their 15-match unbeaten run beating the Johannesburg side 37-3.
Michaelhouse drew first blood through Craven Week flyhalf Bader Pretorius, who slotted an early penalty. The visitors were buoyed by the early lead but were kept at bay by some solid St Johns defence.
Pretorius then scored his side’s first try in the corner but was unable to add the extras, giving his side an 8-0 lead. St Johns struck back with a penalty, which was awarded directly after the restart.
Continued pressure from the Micahelhouse pack told, and Pretorius slotted another penalty before Craven Week hooker Matt Wiseman scored his side’s second try — sending the teams into the shed with the scoreline read 16-3 to the visitors.
Michaelhouse came out firing in the second half and dominated play. The score line could have been far more dramatic but the House boys were denied four tries. Two times Michaelhouse players were held up over the line, while another two tries were denied as the referee called forward passes.
Nevertheless, the Balgowan outfit scored three more tries in the second stanza through Wiseman, centre Liam Furniss and eighthman Jack Walters.
St Charles 14-19 Northwood
St Charles travelled down to Durban on Friday afternoon to play the curtain raiser to the Sharks-Rebels Super Rugby fixture. The Pietermaritzburg school boys lost narrowly to Northwood at King’s Park.
In a game of two halves, it was Northwood who dominated the first stanza. They drew first blood through some simple play, which created space out wide that the Durban North boys used to score their first try.
The visitors were slightly off the pace, but managed to create a couple of scoring opportunities that were denied by some stern Northwood defence. Northwood scored again leaving the half-time score at 12-0.
St Charles rallied after the break and dominated the second half. Jeremy Davidson scored his side’s first try of the night, which William Squires converted.
Their first try gave them confidence, and St Charles continued to set up phases. Their persistence paid off as Davidson pounced on a loose ball and scored and converted his second try of the evening.
St Charles held on to their 14-12 lead for the rest of the match. But just three minutes before full time, Northwood crossed the whitewash to snap victory at the death.
Westville 18-17 Glenwood
A titanic battle between Westville and Glenwood kept spectators on the edge of their seats until the dying moments of the game. Unfortunately for Glenwood, who were celebrating Founders Day, they lost 18-17 despite scoring at the death.
The Green Machine were first on the scoreboard after some sustained pressure. Off a five metre scrum, Craven Week eighthman Marco Palvie picked up and was taken down before the line. Prop Christopher Klopper then crashed over the line after the ball hand been recycled. Flyhalf Jerome Bossr added the extras to make it 7-0 after five minutes.
Westville struck back with a penalty from flyhalf Niel van Rooyen. Both teams then slugged in out in a battle of attrition.
Westville managed to cross the whitewash next. The visitors set up a driving maul, which rumbled into Glenwood’s 22. The Westville forwards then made a number of strong carries, before Craven Week lock Fudge Qoma powered through two would-be tacklers to score under the posts — which Van Rooyen was unable to convert.
The flyhalf made amends soon after by setting up Westville’s second try. The pivot chipped the ball behind the Glenwood backline, which was gathered by wing Tonny Mahlangu. The wing sprinted away to score under the posts — giving Westville a 15-7 lead.
Glenwood had the final say of the half, slotting a penalty to make it 15-10 at the break.
Van Rooyen sunk a penalty first up in the second stanza to put Westville a converted try out of reach.
The scoreline didn’t change up until the death. Glenwood flank Alex Brummer scored for the hosts after a long period deep inside Westville’s half. Bossr added the extras, and it was suddenly a one-point ball game.
Westville were under the cosh for the remaining minutes of the game. Their defence was resolute though, and a penalty at a breakdown saw the visitors kick the ball out to beat the Green Machine.
Kearsney 41-10 St Stithians
Kearsney also took a trip up Johannesburg for their annual fixture against St Stithians and scored seven tries to beat the host 41-10.
A number of injuries meant Kearsney struggled to build and maintain momentum but they still managed to scored some dazzling tries.
The visitors scored their first through wing Cian Waugh. The score came from a lineout steal by lock Ryan Jackson.
Kearsney scored again soon after. Centre Matthew Watts went over in the same corner from a St Stithians 22 metre drop out.
Saints slotted a penalty after Kearsney conceded a scrum penalty.
But again the visitors scored — this time through a counter-attack move. A number of players carried the ball as Kearsney moved into the hosts’ 22. Flank Luke Croshaw crossed the whitewash out wide, which Tristan Tedder converted.
Saints then scored their only try of the afternoon — sucking in the Kearsney defence before scoring out wide.
Kearsney had the final say in the first half, with Watts grabbing his second try to make it 22-10 at the break.
Watts was on hand for his hat trick after the break — running a good line in support of scrumhalf Brendan Vorster, who popped the ball up for Watts to score.
Tedder grabbed a brilliant solo try of his own — slicing through Saints’ defence to score and convert his try — making it 34-10.
Kearsney hooker Josh van Vuuren scored the final try after some good interplay between forwards and backs.
Hilton 41-10 DHS