Zim comeback but fall just short
Mon, 14 Jul 2014 10:15
97 points in the game
Eastern Province Country Districts put in a good first half display to just pip the Zimbabweans 54-43 with the second half fight back something to behold.
Cruising at 39-17 at the break, EP let their guard down as Zimbabwe came out in the second half looking hungry, two tries from mistakes made by the Country Districts was the catalyst for Zimbabwe who fell 11 points short at the final whistle.
A poor start from Zimbabwe handed the Eastern Province Country Districts an early shot at goal, the neighbours from the North knocked on from the kick off and then conceded a penalty that Cameron Hertz slotted over with a great strike.
EP looked to spread the ball wide after flooding into Zimbabwe's 22 for their first try, the ball come to Ethan September who straightened the line superbly to wrong-foot the defenders as he dotted down for the score. Hertz added the extras with another solid kick.
Zimbabwe were quick to strike back as No.9 Campbell Nyakudya slotted his second penalty attempt to give the foreigners their first points.
A high tackle gave Hertz an opportunity to snatch back the three points that Zimbabwe had just scored as he converted with no issue.
Zimbabwe were soon found out by the EP backline, spreading the ball out wide left the defense scrambling and gave plenty of opportunity to the Country Districts boys.
Craig Williams was soon able to take advantage of the stretched defense as the scrumhalf sniped into some space left around the ruck to dive over the line. Hertz was not able to convert in his first miss of the game.
This began the flood gates as Joshua Shelly strolled through the defence to score after Luigi van Jaarsveld broke the line. Shelly stepped his was under the posts and past two defenders to score his teams third try, Hertz was on hand to add the easy extras.
Shelly was involved again for the bonus point try as he slipped a brilliant inside pop pass to Xandre Vos who barged his way over the line with Hertz converting again.
Bradley Christian was the next to get his name on the score sheet as he weaved his way under the posts with the Zimbabwe defense at sixes and sevens. Hertz on hand again to get the points
Against the run of play, Zimbabwe's pacey wing Brian Mhuriyengwe picked up on a loose ball after his forwards stole a line-out to run over 60 metres to score under the posts. Nyakudya got his team into double figures.
Another handling mistake by EP CD and another try for Zimbabwe, Tawanda Ngosi, the other wing, picked up the ball well and rounded the broken defense to score under the posts with Nyakudya adding another simple conversion on half time.
EP led 39-17 at the break.
Hertz got the first points of the second half through a long range penalty that snuck inside the upright.
Zimbabwe looked more direct in getting their third try as Tinashe Gonese picked up from the base of the ruck after a tap penalty to barge over, his scrumhalf Nyakudya added the extras.
Christian got his second try of the match after showing some great pace down the wing, he was able to evade the cross covering tackle and go over in the corner. Hertz, with his toughest kick of the game, struck it well to add the two points.
Prop Nicolaas Oosthuizen got through some work as EP scrummed five metres out, after two attempts at the line by Van Jaarsveld and Williams, Oosthuizen got over. Hertz continued his impressive kicking display.
Zimbabwe were not done yet, Matthew Ushewokunze latched on to a brilliant offload from tighthead Stephen Bhasera in space after he put in a good step for a big man, Nyakudya was on hand for the extras.
A tip tackle late in the game saw the referee go to the TMO and adjudicate a yellow card for Christoffel Viljoen - it could easily have been a red.
Ushewokunze took advantage of the man in bin to barge over the line from a few metres out for his second try after the ball was recycled quickly to him. Another easy kick for Nyakudya saw the Zimbos claw their way back.
Zimbabwe looked rampant with the man advantage, Ngosi got his second try of the match with some good work through the midfield.
Zimbabwe could not wrestle back the game as the clock fought against them, but their brave fight back was definitly the story of the match.
Man of the Match: EP CD's back line was potent in the first half with the likes of Bradley Christian and Joshua Shelly dictating play. For Zimbabwe their pacey wings, Ngosi and Mhuriyengwe got the foreigners going with a special mention going to Zim's captain Stephen Bhasera who was Instrumental at tighthead. In the end though, it was the spear head of EP's attack and their kicker, Cameron Hertz, who was most impressive.
EP Country Districts:
Tries: September, Williams, Shelly, Vos, Christian 2, Oosthuizen
Cons: Hertz 5
Pens: Hertz 3
Tries: Mhuriyengwe, Ngosi 2, Gonese, Ushewokunze 2
Cons: Nyakudya 5
Yellow Card: Christoffel Viljoen (EP CD, 62 - Dangerous tackle, tip tackle)
Eastern Province Country Districts: 15 Estiaan Von Solms, 14 Fabio Mapaling, 13 Cameron Hertz, 12 Davron Cameron, 11 Bradley Christian, 10 Joshua Shelly, 9 Craig Williams, 8 Luigi van Jaarsveld, 7 Evert Potgieter, 6 Ethan September, 5 Erwin Ittershagen-Strauss, 4 Christoffel Viljoen, 3 Xandre Vos, 2 Jacques-Pierre Barkhuizen, 1 Nicolaas Oosthuizen.
Replacments: 16 Johannes Le Roux, 17 MC Van Damme, 18 Zuzingce Mboxwana, 19 Phillip Crouse, 20 Ryan Calitz, 21 Kwesi Ansah, 22 Josiah Twum-Boafo.
Zimbabwe: 15 Tarisai Mapfumo, 14 Tawanda Ngosi, 13 Shaun Snyder, 12 Matthew Ushewokunze, 11 Brian Mhuriyengwe, 10 Angus Bruce, 9 Campbell Nyakudya, 8 Daniel Nyamugama, 7 Cole Bond, 6 Jeff Makoni, 5 Eli Snyman, 4 Tinashe Gonese, 3 Stephen Bhasera, 2 Lebongang Ngwenya, 1 Justin Mendelsohn.
Replacments: 16 Brian Muntanga, 17 Bradley Crause, 18 Ackim Sibanda, 19 Bradley Mangenje, 20 Ngoni Zinyama, 21 Tapiwa Mazorodze, 22 Dean McRoberts.
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