Griquas overpower Young Sables

MIDDLEBURG - The Zimbabwe Under-18 rugby team’s woeful Craven Week continued to unravel as they suffered their second defeat, going down 26-20 to Griquas Country District in a bruising encounter here yesterday.

The Young Sables were their own enemies, struggling at most set pieces especially at line-out time, were hooker Bradley Crause failed to find his jumpers several times despite having one the tallest locks at the tournament, Eli Synman, whose 2.01m tall.

Scrumhalf Ngoni Zinyama’s ball distribution leaved a lot to be desired and lacked urgency when recycling the ball at the breakdown, which resulted in Griquas inflicting a lot of turnovers at the breakdown.

However, they looked dangerous whenever they chose to express themselves with some dazzling runs by eighthman Daniel Nyamugama, who kept on gaining vital territory and giving the go forward ball.

Elusive flank Brian Mutanga was industrious as he broke the line numerous times and put in some big hits in defence.

Zimbabwe started the game like a house on fire, dotting down a try as early as the fourth minute when skipper Stephen Bhasera crashed over but Shaun Synder failed to add the extras.

Godwin “Jaws” Murambiwa’s teenagers extended the lead through a lovely break by  Nyamugama, who sliced through Griquas’ defence before crossing the whitewash for another unconverted try.

The Zimbabweans kept the scoreboard ticking when Synder slotted a close range penalty to give them a 13-0 lead.

The men from Kimberly cut Zimbabwe’s lead to just six points when they responded with a try by lock Jacobus Hermanus Wiese, converted by Coenie Lamprecht.

Zimbabwe put some day light between them and their opponents when Mutanga charged down Lamprecht’s clearance kick. He easily gathered and raced for a try, which Synder converted.

Griquas finished the half stronger when Lamprecht ran in their second try which he converted.

In the second period, the Young Sables completely switched off as they rarely visited the Griquas half. They spent the majority of the half defending and eventually conceded defeat as they let in two tries by Denvill Joseph.