FNB Shimlas beat FNB Madibaz 23-7 in the eighth round of the FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International in Bloemfontein at Xerox Shimla Park and could not secure a bonus point, leaving their semi-final spot dependant on next week’s result between FNB Tuks and FNB Pukke.
The match started off at a high tempo of rugby from both sides. From the kick off FNB Madibaz exposed the defence of the FNB Shimlas and ran through the whole pack forwards. FNB Shimlas recovered rapidly and opened their account first with a seven-pointer from a brilliant tactical kick by winger Carel Coetzee, which was picked up by fullback Marco Mason. He converted his own try to make the score 9-0 to FNB Shimlas.
In the next 10 minutes of the game FNB Shimlas carried most of the ball and had two opportunities to score but unfortunately the final passes went astray. After consistent pressure by the FNB Shimlas, followed by a fine backline move, winger Vuyani Maqina went over for a five-pointer, unfortunately the conversion attempt failed.
FNB Shimlas stretched the lead to 14-0 in the 28th minute of the game. FNB Madibaz had an opportunity to score in the corner just 10 minutes later, but excellent defence from the FNB Shimlas’ flyhalf Nicholaas Naude prevented the FNB Madibaz centre Ivan du Preez from grounding the ball.
FNB Madibaz centre Andile Jho crossed the line for a seve- pointer to make take the half time score to FNB Shimlas 14-7 FNB Madibaz.
FNB Shimlas kept the momentum as flyhalf Nakkie Naude scored the third try, converted by Marco Mason, to stretch the lead to 23-7 two minutes into the second half, still chasing the bonus point secure a Varsity Cup semi-final.
FNB Shimlas dominated play in all phases of the game and kept the FNB Madibaz in their 22metre area, but struggled to convert possession into points. With the second half strategy break FNB Shimlas still needed a bonus-point try to secure that semi-final spot.
In the last 10 minutes FNB Madibaz found their second wind, playing the ball wide with attacking rugby testing the defence of the FNB Shimlas. FNB Shimlas replacement hooker Francois Steyn was sent off with a yellow card with five minutes play remaining, making play difficult for the FNB Shimlas with 14 players on the pitch.
The fulltime score was 23-7 to the FNB Shimlas, who will be supporting FNB Tuks when they face FNB Pukke next week. FNB Shimlas have a bye.
FNB Player that Rocks: Marco Mason (FNB Shimlas)
FNB Shimlas: 23
Tries: Marco Mason (seven-pointer), Vuyani Maqina (five-pointer), Nakkie Naude (seven-pointer)
Cons: Marco Mason (2)
Yellow cards: Francois Steyn
FNB Madibaz: 7
Tries: Andile Jho (seven-pointer)
Yellow card: Francois Nieuwoudt
FNB Shimlas starting XV: 15 Marco Mason, 14 Vuyani Maqina , 13 Kurt Eybers,12 Lihleli Xoli, 11 Carel Coetzee, 10 Nicholaas Naude , 9 Armand Pretorius, 8 Wilandre Kotzenberg, 7 Phumzile Maqondwana ,6 Benji Janse Van Vuuren , 5 Niel Claasen, 4 Nicolaas Immelman ,3 Ruan Kramer, 2 Anrich Alberts , 1 Kwenzokuhle Blose
Substitutes: 16 Francois Steyn, 17 Johan Kotze ,18 Thabiso Msiza , Raymond Woest, 20 Nardus Erasmus, 21 Dian Badenhorst, 22 Rayhaan Lombaard ,23 Sechaba Matsoele
FNB Madibaz starting XV: 1 Xandre Vos, 2 Juan Pierre Jamieson, 3 Nicholaas Oosthuizen, 4 Wynand Grassmann , 5 Reyno du Toit, 6 Francois Nieuwoudt , 7 Brandon Brown , 8 Kevin Kaba , 9 Rouche Nel, 10 Michael Kean, 11 Jixie Molapo, 12 Andile Jho , 13 Ivan John du Preez, 14 Athenkosi Mayinje , 15 Siyanda Zungu.
Substitutes: 16 Xolela Gogela , 17 Tembelihle Yase , 18 Graham Tharratt , 19 Neil Roebeck , 20 Warren Hollis 21 Tevin Claasen , 22 Simon Bolze , 23 Petros Msutwana.
By Xander Snyders