Maties pip gutsy UJ #VarsityCup

Mar 10 • General News, Varsity & Club, Varsity Cup • 2501 Views • Comments Off on Maties pip gutsy UJ #VarsityCup

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Maties vs UJ, Varsity Cup Rugby. Bradley Moolman getting brought to ground, Danie Craven Stadium, Stellenbosch, 09 March 2015.
Photo: Liam Hamer-Nel/alliancephoto.com
Liam Hamer-Nel/alliancephoto.com

Two second half tries handed FNB Maties a slender 16-15 victory over a gutsy FNB UJ in the FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International in Stellenbosch.

The win handed Maties their first victory of the campaign and will bring a sense of relief to Stellenbosch as they ended a four-match winless run. UJ, on the other hand, suffered their second defeat of the campaign but managed to pick up a losing bonus point.

UJ made a positive start to the match and got the first points of the match in the fourth minute when centre Adriaan Vermeulen broke his way through a half-gap after a line-out on Maties’ five metre line. Jaco Fourie’s conversion snuck over the crossbar with the help of the left upright to take the score to 8-0.

The visitors were taking the game to their hosts and displayed confidence with ball-in-hand as they made plenty of metres with every ball carry and camped in Maties’ half of the field. Maties’ live-wire fullback Craig Barry took the game to the UJ whenever he got hold of the ball and managed to break the advantage line with every carry but some stellar defence by the visitors snubbed their hosts.

UJ continued to pile on the pressure on Maties and held much of the possession in the first half but had nothing to show for it as handling errors stopped them in their tracks from adding to their points tally. They were not going to be denied in the 37th minute when they were awarded a penalty after sustained pressure. Fourie opted to have a shot at goal and it paid off as he split the uprights to take the visitors into double figures.

Maties went on the attack in the closing minutes of the first half as the home side threw everything they had at the UJ defence. They crossed the line after the hooter had gone but were held-up by some stellar defence as the Johannesburg students held the lead at the halfway mark.

The home side came out guns blazing at the resumption of the match but the UJ stood firm and kept them at bay. UJ managed to get their hands on the ball and slowly stamped their dominance in the game. Vermeulen showed his class when he brushed two defenders aside and stepped past another before making the pass to Bradley Moolman on the right wing, who scored in the corner to extend the visitors’ lead to 15-0 after 51 minutes.

Maties were not going to be shut-out on their home ground as an incredible Koos Loubser pass in a tackle found Beyers de Villiers, who sprinted his way over the try line to bring the home side back into the contest. Ernest Stapelberg calmly slotted the conversion to reduce the deficit to seven points.

The try sparked the home side into life as they continued to press forward but, unfortunately, handling errors cost them valuable momentum. Maties looked dangerous once they were able to nullify their handling errors and thought they had grabbed their second try of the match in the 68th minute when Barry crashed over the line, however, the ball popped loose in the tackle and the home side spilled another chance.

UJ were under all sorts of pressure as the Maroon Machine kept hammering away at their defence and finally found a way through in the 70th minute, when Jacobus van der Merwe bulldozed and stretched his way over the line. Thomson added the extra points to hand the home side a narrow 16-15 lead.

The home side managed to hold on for the final minutes of the match to secure a slender one point victory over the Johannesburg students.

FNB Player that Rocks: Adriaan Vermeulen

Scorers:

For FNB Maties:

Tries: de Villiers, van der Merwe

Cons: Stapelberg, Thomson

For FNB UJ:

Tries: Vermeulen, Moolman

Con: Fourie

Pen: Fourie

Teams:

FNB Maties: 15 Craig Barry, 14 Jamie Joseph, 13 Christoff van Tonder, 12 Koos Loubser, 11 JP Lewis, 10 Ernest Stapelberg, 9 Bjorn Bernardo, 8 Derick Linde, 7 Justin Benn, 6 Beyers de Villiers, 5 Wilhelm van der Sluys (captain), 4 Ian Groenewald, 3 Abel de Klerk, 2 Neethling Gericke, 1 John Hubert Meyer.

Replacements: 16 Craig Corbett, 17 Migael Grobler, 18 Lourens Fick, 19 Kobus van Dyk, 20 Remu Malan, 21 Brandon Thomson, 22 Kyle Leibrandt, 23 Jacobus van der Merwe.

FNB UJ: 15 Ronald Brown, 14 Bradley Moolman, 13 Robert De Bruyn, 12 Adriaan Vermeulen, 11 Aphiwe Dyanti, 10 Jaco Fourie, 9 Chuma Faas, 8 Dylan Peterson, 7 Kyle Van Dalen, 6 Kobus Porter (captain), 5 David Antonites, 4 Werner Lourens, 3 Nico Du Plessis, 2 Siphatho Qinisile, 1 Gareth Milasinovich.

Replacements: 16 Jannes Snyman, 17 Raeez Salie, 18 Griffith van Wyk, 19 Wiaan Conradie, 20 Hilton Mudarika, 21 James Campbell, 22 Dominic Kroezen, 23 Brandon Landsberg.

Referees: Lourens van der Merwe, Jaco Kotze

Assistant referees: Local

TMO: Shaun Veldsman

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