Play-off picture emerges in junior competitions
October 01, 2018
With one round left in the various age groups of the SA Rugby Provincial Championships, a clearer picture of the four play-off candidates is emerging, with DHL Western Province also making the headlines with a 173-0 win over Eastern Province in the Under-21 competition.

The Vodacom Blue Bulls remain top of the pile though, while the Down Touch Griffons Under-20 side and Cell C Sharks Under-19 teams are in a good position to end top in their respective logs.

A summary of the weekend's matches are:

SA Rugby Under-21 Provincial Championship

There were important wins for the Vodacom Blue Bulls and Cell C Sharks, but the weekend was dominated by a record win for the DHL Western Province.

The visitors totally outplayed EP Elephants on route to a 27-try haul in Despatch, scoring a record 173-0 win. The Vodacom Blue Bulls held sway 60-24 over the Leopards in Potchefstroom and the Natal side clocked a 44-28 win over the Toyota Free State.

After the weekend, the Vodacom Blue Bulls (23) are top of the log, but have played an extra match, with the Xerox Golden Lions (21), DHL WP (18), Cell C Sharks (17) and Toyota Free State (13) still in play-off contention.

The Pretoria side moved to the top thanks to a 60-24 win over the Leopards in Potchefstroom.

The home side were well in the game at halftime, leading 24-17, but once the men in blue side found their stride, they were the only ones keeping the scoreboard ticking over.

In the end they scored seven second-half tries without reply to secure a good win.

The Cell C Sharks scored an important win over the Toyota Free State in Durban on Saturday, beating the visitors in a highly entertaining match. Both sides attacked well, but the KZN side showed more spring in their legs in the second half, pulling away for a solid win.

On Friday, the DHL Western Province team had no mercy on the EP Elephants, dismantling them 173-0 in a match played in Despatch.

The visitors held an 85-0 lead at the break and continues with their try-scoring spree in the second half, dotting down 27 times for a new record in the competition.

Fourteen players scored tries, with no8 Muller Uys and winger Tumi Mogoje getting five each.

Results and Scorers:

EP Elephants 0, DHL Western Province 173

DHL WP - Tries: Schalk Erasmus, Gift Dlamini (3), Muller Uys (5), Moegamat Kannemeyer, Abner van Reenen, Tumi Mogoje (5), Lubeblo Scott (2), Mujaahid van der Hoven (2), Sako Makata (2), Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, Ricardo Duarttee, Lomb Lombard (2), Ryan Muller. Conversions: Josh Vermeulen (19).

Cell C Sharks 44 (20), Toyota Free State 28 (14)

Cell C Sharks - Tries: Jordan Els, Courtney Winnaar, Ilunga Mukendi, James Tedder, Mfundo Ndhlovu. Conversions: Tedder (5). Penalties: Tedder (3).
Toyota Free State - Tries: Marnus van der Merwe, Sango Xamlashe, Marthinus Boshoff, Ruben Cross. Conversions: Lubabalo Dobela (4).

Leopards 24 (24), Vodacom Blue Bulls 60 (17)

Leopards - Tries: Jeandre Leonard, Coenie Kruger, Lincoln Daniels. Conversions: Janlu Steenkamp (3). Penalty: Steenkamp.
Vodacom Blue Bulls - tries: Rickert Korff, Ewan Coetzee, JC Pretorius, Xolisa Gama, Stedman Gans (2), Earll Dowrie, Ginter Smuts, Cliven Loubser, Erich Cronje. Conversions: Theo Boshoff (2), Andell Loubser (2), Cliven Loubser.

SA Rugby Provincial Under-20 Championship The Limpopo Blue Bulls and Hino Valke scored important wins to stay in the hunt for a top four log position.

The Limpopo side travelled to Kimberley to beat Tafel Lager Griquas 54-14 and moved into the top four, while in Kempton Park, the home side clinched a 43-38 win over SWD Eagles and the third place on the log in the process.

The Valke scored eight tries to five in an entertaining match. Outside centre, Dylan Nysschen, was very productive, adding four tries on his own, as well as kicking three conversions. Curtley Scheepers kept his try-scoring abilities on track, dotting down three times for the visitors.

In Kimberley, the visitors had too much power for the home side. They scored eight tries to two, but only pulled away in the second half to secure the win.

Results and scorers:

Tafel Lager Griquas 14 (14), Limpopo Blue Bulls 54 (21)

Tafel Lager Griquas - Tries: Lohan Zeelie, Martian Neil. Conversions: Ruan Schultz (2).
Limpopo Blue Bulls

- tries: Jan-Barend Meyer, Xandre Miller, Enrique Grobler, Jason Martins, Xander Kruger, Tyrique Ferris, Stephane Ndjaya. Conversions: Rethabile Mzamo (4), Kruger (3).

Hino Valke 48 (29), SWD 38 (17)

Hino Valke - Tries: Jonathan Harding (2), Dylan Nysschen (4), Stephan Kempen, Webster Swanepoel. Conversions: Quinton Fincham, Nysschen (3).
SWD – Tries: Braam Abrahams, Ronaldo Jansen, Curtley Scheepers (3). Conversions: Abrahams, Scheepers. Penalty: Abrahams.

SA Rugby Under-19 Provincial Championship

The Cell C Sharks remained undefeated, while the Vodacom Blue Bulls and DHL Western Province secured play-off spots this weekend.

The Xerox Golden Lions, who will complete their fixtures next week, already qualified for the play-offs as well.

The Vodacom Blue Bulls had to dispel a huge late surge by the Leopards in Potchefstroom, beating them 41-36 to move into second place on the log.

The visitors held a comfortable 34-17 lead at the break and looked set for victory before the Leopards showed some late determination, coming back with a couple of tries.

The Cell C Sharks kept their unbeaten run intact with a 42-12 win over the Toyota Free State in Durban. It was a close tussle in the first half, but the home side extended their 15-0 halftime lead into a solid win.

On Friday, the DHL Western Province team got an important result when they outplayed Eastern Province to win 47-18. The home side kept the Capetonians at bay in the first half, but five tries in the second half saw the blue and white hoops pulling away.

Results and scorers:

Leopards 36 (17), Vodacom Blue Bulls 41 (34)

Leopards - Tries: Goose du Rand, Craivian Smith, George van der Westhuizen, Kagiso Woodbridge, Andries Fouche (2). Conversions: Tristan Oosthuizen, Hanru van Rooyen.
Vodacom Blue Bulls - Tries: Dewald Donald, Llewellyn Classen, Janko Swanepoel, Ruben Beytell, Rene Lucas, Luke Rossouw, Marnus Potgieter. Conversions: Andrew Kota, Vaughen Isaacs, Rossouw.

Cell C Sharks 42 (15), Toyota Free State 12 (0)

Cell C Sharks - Tries: JJ van der Mescht, Muller du Plessis, Caleb Dingaan (2), Thaakir Abrahams, Matthew Doyle. Conversions: Sanele Nohamba, Henry Chamberlain. Penalties: Nohamba. Chamberlain.

EP Elephants 18 (10), DHL Western Province 47 (14).

EP - Tries: Lacken Gray, Duane Hanekom, Luke Smuts. Conversion: Dylan le Roux.
WP - Tries: Andile Nondwangu, Bevan Prinsloo, Francke Horn, Geraldo Jaars, Angelo Davids, Duren Hoffmann. Conversions: David Coetzer.

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