Paul Roos 21-23 Paarl Gim
In the gripping Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools derby, Paarl Gim did enough to hold on for victory despite a late comeback by hosts Paul Roos at Markotter in Stellenbosch.
Gimmies had the better of the first half come scrum time, putting the home side under tremendous pressure. They dominated the breakdown area and the Maroon Machine could not get enough clean ball to put their dangerous backs into space.
Gim won their first penalty from a ruck and fullback Naudé Wessels was successful with the long range attempt to put the Paarl side 3-0 up after 10 minutes. Paul Roos immediately attacked from the restart and won a line-out 23 metres from the try-line. They mauled from there and centre Kristoff Baard forced his way over to score before adding the conversion himself.
After some aimless kicking by both teams Paul Roos attacked from their own half but lost the ball following a poor pass. Gimmies flank Johan Visser was quick to pounce and picked up the loose ball before offloading to Wessels. He drifted beautifully through a gap in defence and offloaded in the nick of time to Max Thalwitzer.
The wing had a clear run for a try close to the posts. The easy conversion was missed but centre George Lourens slotted home a penalty just before the break to edge his side ahead.
Gim started the second half well and attacked the try-line relentlessly. They received a penalty for a high tackle and were given an extra 10m by the referee when Paul Roos kicked the ball away. This took them to within sight of the line and, from the resulting line-out, flyhalf Wian van Zyl dived over to score the Gimmies’ second try.
8th man Muller Uys then had a strong run for Gim resulting in another penalty. They opted for the line-out and from the maul that developed, they were held up over the line. From a strong 5m scrum Van Zyl then delayed his pass, enabling centre Charl du Toit to run onto it at speed and twist his way over the line for try number three. Wessels was successful with the conversion to see Gimmies streaking away at 23-7.
With only 15 minutes left to play, Paul Roos dug deep to mount a comeback. They attacked from a 5m line-out and went wide where Jason Myburgh was held just short. A penalty for offside by the Gimmies, however, allowed 8th man Malan Basson to barge over. Baard converted and Gim’s advantage had been cut to nine points with five minutes to play.
Paul Roos kept knocking on the door, opting to tap and bash with successive penalties before flanker Roelf Burger crossed to score. Baard converted again and with the score at 23-21, the home crowd was cheering for a comeback.
Time, though, was not on their side and after Gimmies won one last turnover, they kicked for touch to seal a memorable victory.
For Paul Roos:
Tries: Kristoff Baard, Malan Basson, Roelf Burger
Cons: Kristoff Baard 3
For Paarl Gim:
Tries: Max Thalwitzer, Wian van Zyl, Charl du Toit
Con: Naudé Wessels
Pens: Naudé Wessels, George Lourens
Paul Roos: 15 Joshua Vermeulen, 14 Nico Leonard, 13 Troy Payne, 12 Kristoff Baard, 11 Jason Myburgh, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Joss van Eeden, 8 Malan Basson, 7 Roelf Burger, 6 Dean van Tonder, 5 Joa Swart (captain), 4 Lazlo Pscorn, 3 Stephan Annandale, 2 Abrie Coetzee, 1 Muammir Salie.
Replacements: 16 Christiaan van Deventer, 17 Robert Matthee, 18 Dre Calitz, 19 Matthys Niewoudt, 20 De Wet Castelyn, 21 Tiaan Coetzee, 22 Hein Steenkamp, 23 Sebastian Uys.
Paarl Gimnasium: 15 Naudé Wessels, 14 Max Thalwitzer, 13 Charl du Toit, 12 George Lourens, 11 Keenan Abrahams, 10 Wian van Zyl, 9 Zak Burger, 8 Muller Uys, 7 Gustav Marais, 6 Johan Visser, 5 Ernst van Rhyn (captain), 4 MJ Hayes, 3 O’Neil Thiart, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Rohan Hamman.
Replacements: 16 Emile Booysen, 17 André Booysen, 18 Jan Neveling, 19 Nicolaas Uys, 20 Johan van As, 21 Andries Viljoen, 22 Theo Boshoff, 23 Taig Schoor.
Referee: Divan Smit