UP-Tuks retain top spot
VARSITY CUP REPORT: UP-Tuks' second half performance made sure they retain the number one spot in their 51-23 win against a spirited UCT-Ikey Tiger side in Pretoria.
After trailing 12-23 at the break, the Tuks scored five unanswered tries in the second-half to secure the win and book a spot in the semi-finals.
Despite the defeat, UCT-Ikey Tigers could have been more of a threat but their ill-discipline took centre stage in the second half and cost them dearly.
After just 15 minutes of play, UCT led 15-0, thanks to two tries by Cuan Hablutzel. The hooker's first try came after he charged down Tuks' fullback Divan Rossouw's kick to score.
Hablutzel sealed his brace on the back of driving maul. Lubbe converted both tries, respectively.
After the strategy break, UCT's defence had to work hard. The Cape Town-based side absorbed all the pressure. They eventually stole the ball inside their own five-metre and produced a counter-attack that made sure Nyasha Tarusenga dived over for a seven-point try, 23-0.
UCT's ill-discipline made an appearance late in the first half as they went down to 13-men. Kuyenzeka Xaba's yellow card was soon followed by UCT's hero Hablutzel.
Tuks took advantage of the extra numbers on the field and scored a double. First Andre Warner scrambled over after a quick tap and soon speedster Maxwane went over in the corner, to trail 12-23 at the break.
Tuks started the second half like a house one fire and within the first minute, they added to their tally. Adrian Maebane went over the chalk after a huge line-out error by UCT made sure Tuks won possession on UCT's 22 and shifted the ball wide.
Rossouw managed to keep the ball in play and his offload was collected by the centre Maebane. De Beer narrow the margin to just four, 19-23.
Minutes later Tuks took the lead, thanks to UCT's failure to handle their relentless attack and went down to 14-man as the hosts were awarded a penalty try.
And with 14 men on the pitch, it was always going to be a difficult task for the visitors. Soon Tuks flyhalf De Beer extended the lead with a try. De Beer added the extras, 35-23 after 60 minutes.
The hosts started to seize control of the match and a great partnership by De Beer and Maxwane on the touch, ensured the wing sliced through UCT's defence and scored. De Beer added the extras, 44-23.
Tuks went down to 14-men after Christiaan Massyn was yellow-carded - however that did not deteriorate the Tuks' attack as they continued to hunt for that 50 points.
With three minutes left on the clock and more than 11 phases passed, UCT went down to 14-men, again as William Day received a yellow card for a high tackle.
Eventually, Tuks got to the 50 mark when UCT's repeat infringements resulted in a penalty try and a flattering scoreline for the hosts.
Tries: Maxwane 2, Warner, Adrian Maebane, Penalty Tries 2, De Beer
Cons: De Beer 4
Tries: Hablutzel 2, Tarusenga
Cons: Lubbe 3
Yellow cards: Cuan Hablutzel (UCT, 38), Kuyenzeka Xaba (UCT, 32), TBC (UCT, 50), Christiaan Massyn (Tuks, 66), William Day (UCT, 78)
UP-Tuks: 15 Divan Rossouw, 14 Dewald Naude, 13 Adrian Maebane, 12 Impi Visser, 11 Sibahle Maxwane, 10 Marthinus de Beer, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Clyde Davids, 7 Christiaan Massyn, 6 Eduan Lubbe, 5 Aston Fortuin, 4 Brian Leitch, 3 Johan Fouche, 2 Cornelius Els, 1 Andrew Beerwinkel.
Replacements: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Jacobus Holtzhausen, 18 Marius Verwey, 19 Juan-Re Swanepoel, 20 Embrose Papier, 21 Keanan van Wyk, 22 Joshua Stander, 23 Gerhardus Steenekamp.
UCT-Ikeys: 15 Lohan Lubbe, 14 Rayno Mapoe, 13 Joel Smith, 12 Hendrik Lategan, 11 Seb Roodt, 10 Rob Anderson, 9 Stefano de Gouveia, 8 Nyasha Tarusenga, 7 Kuyenzeka Xaba, 6 Jason Klaasen (captain), 5 Gary Porter, 4 Duncan Saffy, 3 Michael Kumburai, 2 Cuan Hablutzel, 1 Wayrin Losper.
Replacements: 16 Martin Chandler, 17 William Day, 18 Lee-Marvin Mazebuko, 19 Alva Senderayi, 20 Sanele Malwane, 21 Msizi Zondi, 22 Michael Henning, 23 Gerard Pieterse.
Referee: Vusi Msibi
Assistant referees: Local
TMO: Willie Vos