FNB UJ made it three wins in a row as they managed to overcome a spirited performance by FNB Madibaz as they managed to win the match 36-28 at the Johannesburg stadium in the 2017 Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International.
The home side set the tone of the match early on, as they applied relentless pressure on FNB Madibaz territory and looked likely to break the deadlock, but had to be patient with their build-up as the away side came into the game with a defensive strategy.
FNB UJ eventually took the lead courtesy of some awful handling and butter-fingers from FNB Madibaz, as prop Nico du Plessis was gifted with one of the easiest tries he could have scored, Divan Nel slotted the conversion and it was 7-0 to the home side.
After the first strategic break FNB UJ were gaining momentum and Divan Nel converted a penalty to add another three points. FNB UJ were all over FNB Madibaz as the away side spent the majority of the half defending their try line.
FNB UJ were playing with that swagger, and it was evident when the team touched down from a maul and prop Waldo Weideman scored FNB UJ’s second try. Divan Nel,as usual, made sure with the conversion and FNB UJ were 17-0. However, just on the stroke of half time FNB Madibaz managed to score a try and added some respect to the scoreline as flyhalf Thomas Kean scored a try but missed the resulting coversion. It was 17-5 going into half time.
The half time talk seemed to have done the trick for the FNB Madibaz team as lock Wynard Grassmann caught FNB UJ napping and made it a seven-point game as the conversion was missed, 17-10 after 45 minutes.
The tables had turned when FNB Madibaz got their third try in succession and put themselves back in the contest launching wave after wave of attacks, and they scored courtesy of Nicholas Oosthuizen. The match remarkably turned around woth the score at 17-19, 10 minutes into the second half. Credit to the coach of FNB Madibaz, who spurred his team back into the game.
The match was turning into a thriller, as Aphiwe Dyanti stepped his way past the FNB Madibaz defence and managed to offload to scrumhalf Johan Esterhuizen to score a seven-point try and FNB UJ were ahead 26-19.
Divan Nel scored a penalty and made it a 10-point game as FNB UJ were ahead 29-19. The nerves were finally ended when winger Godfrey Ramaboea scored the decisive try, with the conversion scored by Divan Nel to put FNB UJ comfortably ahead 36-19. However FNB Madibaz refused to go down without a fight and scored a try late on by Simon Bolze, and the conversion was successful.
The match eventually ended 36-28 to the home side.
FNB Player that Rocks: Aphiwe Dyanti (FNB UJ)
FNB UJ: 36
Tries: Nico Du Plessis, Waldo Weideman, Johan Esterhuizen (seven-point), Godfrey Ramaboea
Cons: Divan Nel (4)
Pen: Divan Nel (2)
FNB NMMU: 28
Tries: Thomas Kean, Nicholas Oosthuizen (seven-point), Wynard Grassmann, Simon Bolze (seven-point)
Cons: Thomas Kean (2)
FNB UJ Starting XV: 15 Ewan Adams, 14 Carlisle Jordan, 13 Aphiwe Dyanti, 12 Jaco Fourie, 11 Godfrey Ramaboea 10 Divan Nel, 9 Johann Esterhuizen, 8 Leon Massyn, 7 Adrian Bester, 6 Wian Conradie, 5 Reinhaardt Nothnagel, 4 Kevin du Randt, 3 Nico du Plessis, 2 Johannes Snyman ©, 1 Waldo Weideman
Replacements: 16 Le Roux Baard, 17 Kyle Kruger, 18 Chergin Fillies, 19 Jo Hanko De Villiers, 20 Siyabonga Luwaca, 21 Devon Mare, 22 Johann Vermaak , 23 Peter John Walters
FNB NMMU Starting XV: 15 Lindelwu Zungu, 14 Mayinje Athenkosi, 13 Siphumelele Mtsutwana, 12 Andile Jho, 11 Ivan-John du Preez, 10 Thomas Kean, 9 Rouche Nel, 8 Kevin Kaba ©, 7 Henry Brown, 6 Stephanus Nieuwoudt, 5 Gerrit Huisamen, 4 Wynand Grassman, 3 Nicolaas Oosthuizen, 2 JP Jamieson, 1 Xandre Vos
Replacements: 16 Jedwyn Harty, 17 Thembelihle Yase, 18 Nicolas Roebeck, 19 du Toit Reyno , 20 Justin Hollis, 21 Lovu Claassen, 22 Bolze Simon Nord, 23 Molapo. Nkosinathi
By Nkosinathi Shazi