Interest in schools rugby is increasing while interest in Super Rugby is diminishing
Paul Roos's 1st XV had an uncomfortable year last year and much was excepted of this year's 1st XV after an outstanding Under-16 in 2013. The start was erratic but it seems that now the class of those younger players is starting to tell as they find their feet. Certainly they were value for their surprise 16-10 win over Paarl Gim on Gimmies' field in Paarl.
Paul Roos could just be on the right path for an outstanding season.
Unfortunately winter started at the Cape on Saturday and the match was rain-soaked. It started as a drizzle and then became hard and drenching, But still there was a big crowd, still the spectators were cheerful and full of fun, still the rugby manners were outstanding and still both teams tried to play constructive rugby. The game had life, not just the sight of falling scrums, slowly forming line-outs and mindless kicking.
It is no wonder that interest in schools rugby is increasing while interest in Super Rugby is diminishing.
Paarl Gim were without their SA Schools player, Grant Hermanus. Then in the first minutes, they lost Paul Human their replacement fullback and he in turn was replaced by George Lourens. Just before half-time Lourens was also injured and was replaced by Keenan Abrahams. They were also without massive Jaco Willemse, injured in a schools trial, and captain Wayne Visagie.
Paul Roos did the early attacking and ruled the first half, leading at one stage 13-0 but Gim fought back in the second half till a late penalty by goal lanky Aidynn Cupido made the lead more secure.
Gim had a good moment early on when their exceptionally tall lock Hennie Beukes won a Paul Roos line-out.
Paarl Gim had surprising difficulty in the scrums where they conceded several penalties in succession. From the second scrum penalty Reinhardt Fortuin, the Paul Roos flyhalf, goaled. 3-0 after 13 minutes.
George Lourens was caught in possession near his line and Paul Roos won a turnover and went left. Captain Michael Meyer gave Matt Gallow a splendid pass and the centre scored.
Paul Roos led 8-0 at half-time and increased that lead after three minutes of the second half when Aidynn Cupido, who looks nothing like his compact father, broke and flank Dean van Tonder scored. 13-0.
Paarl Gim looked certain to score but the slippery ball popped from eager hands. In fact Gimmies seemed to find it harder to handle in the wet than Paul Roos.
A penalty gave Gimmies a five-metre line-out which became a five-metre scrum on the left. They did an 8-9, HJ Luus to captain Zandré de Koker and the little scrumhalf broke and scampered over next to the posts., 13-7 as Walter Smit converted and then when the flyhalf goaled a penalty 13-10 after 50 minutes.
Momentum was with Paarl Gim but then stocky scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies broke brilliantly down the middle of the field and momentum shifted to Paul Roos. They spoilt a promising move with a pass into touch.
With three minutes to go Gimmies were penalised at a tackle and Aidynn Cupido goaled.
When the final whistle went a horde of Paul Roos boys in their maroon blazers flooded onto the field. After eight successive defeats at the hands of Paarl Gim, their side had won.
They formed their Jolla Bolla - a tight circle of players in the middle with their captain speaking. The matrics formed a second circle and then beyond them the rest of the school. They sang and then the circles wheeled around. It was a moment of great joy. There seemed to be no rain.
Paarl Gim: 15. Paul Human, 14. Leaviel Gouws, 13. Taigh Schoor, 12. Willie Smal, 11. Grant Williams, 10. Walter Smit, 9. Zandré de Koker (captain), 8. HJ Luus, 7. Waldo Macdonald, 6. Dehan Visser, 5. Hennie Beukes, 4. Dieter Leicher, 3. Adriaan Geldenhuys, 2. Marco Mostert, 1. Gavin van den Berg
Replacements: 16. Willem Moolman, 17. Heinrich Hattingh, 18. O’ Neil Thiart, 19. MJ Hayes, 20. Gustav Marais/Johan Visser, 21. Keenan Abrahams, 22. George Lourens, 23. Charl du Toit
Coaches: Christoff Lötter, Hendrik Weber
Paul Roos: 15. Aidynn Cupido, 14. Nico Leonard, 13. Matt Gallow, 12. Edrich Venter, 11. Edwill van der Merwe, 10. Reinhardt Foruin, 9. Herschel Jantjies, 8. Michael Meyer (captain), 7. Dean van Tonder, 6. Jacques Oosthuizen, 5. Emile Cloete, 4. Louis Conradie, 3. Jerome Korf, 2. Jacques van Zyl, 1. Carl Prinsloo
Replacements: 16. Muammir Salie, 17. Robert Matthee, 18. Christiaan Hamman, 19. Joa Swart, 20. Mitchell Carstens, 21. Calvin Nell, 22. Joshua Vermeulen, 23. Paul Beresford
Coaches: Hein Kriek, Dawie Snyman
Referee: Francois Pretorius