In a slick display, that cynics might say came two weeks too late, Paarl Boys’ High hit peak form to demoralise a despairing HTS Drostdy side 61-18 at Brug Street on Saturday, 18 August (2012).
The nine-two try margin pretty well illustrates the Strepies’ superiority in a game in which the Worcester lads, although severely outgunned, never gave up and contributed fully to a lovely game of rugby in unseasonably warm, cloudless conditions.
The visitors’ backs were not expected to hold the slick locals, but their forwards also found the going very tough, where indisposed hooker Marius Paulsen and SA Under-18 prop Wilco Louw were sorely missed.
Even the Donkeys’ fearsome loose forward marauders Izak Burger and Hanro Liebenberg were given very little slack as the hosts’ No.8 Johan Botha.delivered a quite outstanding performance and it was only with the introduction of substitute François “Bees” Pienaar after the break that they managed to breach the local defences.
Boishaai got the scoreboard operators busy in the fifth minute when scrumhalf Pieter Schoonraad was on hand to receive an inside pass on the left after the Drostdy defence had been sucked in on the right. Fullback Hanno Kotze slotted the first of his eight conversions to make it 7-0.
Determined to hit back in any way possible, the Donkeys entrusted four penalties to flyhalf Kelly Olivier in the course of the next ten minutes. The slightly built pivot was successful with the last two, bringing his side within a point of the Strepies. Boishaai 7 HTS Drostdy 6
From that point on things went dramatically pear-shaped for the Worcester unit.
In the seventeenth minute outside centre Dewald Naudé trotted over for the first of his three tries after breathtaking multi-phase touchline-to-touchline play left the home team with a four man overlap. 14-6
With the forwards starting to enjoy their ascendancy under the baton of the impressive Botha, the next try saw juggernaut loosehead Thomas du Toit crash through the Donkeys’ defencefour minutes later. 21-6
Revelling in the surfeit of clean possession coming from their pack, the Boishaai backs were treating the disappointingly small crowd to spectacular running and Naudé was on hand to receive a pop pass from left wing Danté van der Merwe to finish the first half scoring with barely a finger laid on him on the half-hour mark.
A tighthead right on the break should have piled on still more misery, but a ruck infringement saw Olivier find a safe touch. Half-time: Paarl Boys’ High 28 HTS Drostdy 6.
Within ten minutes of the restart the Brug Street Bombers had stretched their advantage to 41 points .
First right wing inside centre Henri Nimb offloaded to Kotze who steered a perfect grubber through for right wing Darian Hock to dive over for the hosts’ only unconverted try. 33-6
Barely two minutes later Fernando Kermis, who had just replaced the injured Nimb, dived over at the posts with the Drostdy players completely bamboozled 40-6, then Naudéregistered his third five-pointer of the day following another defence-splitting grubber by van der Merwe. 47-6
To their immense credit Drostdy summoned up all their strength to send powerful replacement flank François Pienaar over from a ruck five metres out. Boishaai 47 HTS Drostdy 11
Back came the irresistible blue-and-white tide and captain Craig Corbett, who has been such an underrated leader throughout the season, dived over for their eighth try. 54-11
With three minutes on the clock burly Donkeys captain Izak Burger scored his eighteenth touchdown of 2012 from a set move in which he took an inside pass from the centre. Olivier raised the flags. 54-18.
Sensing a brief lull in the Boishaai onslaught the Donkeys tried swinging the ball. A try did result, but not where the lads in the scarlet jerseys hoped: Van der Merwe coolly intercepted near the halfway line to plant the ball under the crossbar.
Only a knock-on prevented yet another try, but Boishaai were more than satisfied with the 61-18 margin.
Ironically HTS Drosdy could still do their conquerors a huge favour. This Saturday Paarl Gym visit the fortress that is Trappespark well aware that defeat there could impact negatively on their national rankings. With their full front row on the field they are sure to pose more problems, but whether or not they will topple Gym is debatable.
Boys’ High finish their year away to Primrose RFC in a match in which virtually nothing but pride is at stake. Unfortunately for their hosts, pride is one thing the visitors take very seriously.
By Tony Stoops