FNB CPUT showed no mercy and were full value for their 65-0 victory over FNB Rhodes on Friday in Cape Town.
With the victory, the defending FNB Varsity Shield champions not only enhanced their chances of retaining their title but also strengthened their chances of playing for promotion to next year's FNB Varsity Cup.
While the final scoreline suggets otherwise, Rhodes gave as good as they got in the early exchanges - not standing back in any of the initial physical exchanges. CPUT, for their part, arguably tried too hard to 'enforce' rather than play their way into the game. Nonetheless, once their captain Butsha Mputa (who's been standing in for fit-again Lunathi Nxele - who started on the bench) sliced through the Rhodes defence for a try converted by Feghon-Leigh Snyders the signs looked ominous.
Duly, Bradley van Boven barged over five minutes later after receiving the ball five metres out (again converted by Snyders), before Randy Brinkhuis, Nathan Mbele and Bekithemba Gqibithole added further five-pointers. Brinkhuis converted the last of these after Snyders radar went astray.
The result of the five-try blitz, and a missed penalty from Rhodes' fullback Sandile Mantantana), meant that CPUT's 'job' was done at half-time and the score on 31-0. It was only left to see how much gloss the Tekkies could put on it!
Judging by the intensity with which the hosts came out in the second half, their coach Alistrair Theys must have made clear that the more points the better. George Lee Erasmus duly obliged, as the livewire scrumhalf dotted down twice in succession by scything through a virtually non-existent Rhodes defence. Snyders converted the latter try, with CPUT's urgency evident by how quickly he knocked it over and his teammates were in position for the kick-off.
At the same time, the Stallions were already beginning to look ragged and Tauriq Gamieldien took full advantage by running in a try, then another five minutes later. Neither Snyders, nor Brinkhuis had their range-finders callibrated on a breathless warm afternoon.
That was about the only thing off in CPUT's game, as their efforts with ball in hand helped reserve scrumhalf Hugan Engelbrecht add a 10th try (which Snyders did convert from straight in front), before Gamieldien sealed his hat-trick much to the joy of his teammates and support staff.
With the win, CPUT transferred pressure in the race for the second spot, and a promotion playoff spot, in the FNB Varsity Shield 2019-2020 Combined Log back onto rivals FNB WSU who had a tough trip to FNB UKZN later on Friday.
FNB Player That Rocks: Jared Manus (FNB CPUT)
Steers Kinging Moment: Tauriq Gamieldien (FNB CPUT)
FNB CPUT: 65 (31)
Tries: Butsha Mputa, Bradley van Boven, Randy Brinkhuis, Nathan Mbele, Bekithemba Gqibithole, George Lee Erasmus 2, Tauriq Gamieldien 3, Hugan Engelbrecht
Conversions: Feghon-Leigh Snyders 4, Randy Brinkhuis
FNB Rhodes: 0
FNB CPUT: 1 De-Angelo Williams, 2 Bekithemba Gqibithole, 3 Itumeleng Mononyane, 4 Carlo van Greunen, 25 Bradley van Boven, 6 Butsha Mputa (captain), 7 Roland van der Heever, 8 Siyasanga Ngubelanga, 9 George Lee Erasmus, 10 Feghon-Leigh Snyders, 11 Keenan Williams, 12 Jared Manus, 13 Nathan Mbele, 14 Tauriq Gamieldien, 15 Randy Brinkhuis.
Replacements: 16 Lucien Phillips, 17 Onika Mgijima, 18 Jean van Wyk, 19 Keanan Solomons, 20 Phumlani Mkhaliphi, 21 Hugan Engelbrecht, 22 Maxwell Klaasen, 23 Lunathi Nxele.
Coach: Alastair Theys
FNB Rhodes: 1 Siyolise Qupe, 2 Uzuqaqambe Nyanda, 3 Sino Ralo (captain), 4 Sithembele Njokweni, 5 Siya Nqezo, 6 Mawande Adam, 7 Simon Cowley, 8 Bradley van Heerden, 9 Nicholas Dettmer, 10 Bukhosi Mhlambiso, 11 Ntsika Ndungane, 12 Nicholas Butler, 13 Simelela Mbanzi, 13 Damian Morrow, 14 Ezra Mager, 15 Sandile Mantantana.
Replacements: 16 Athenkosi Nkewana, 17 Loyiso Isaacs, 18 Damian Hilpert, 19 Ongeziwe Shumi, 20 Viwe Makeleni, 21 Garfield Khanyile, 22 Cameron Libera, 23 Lwazi Mzamane.
Coach: Carlos Katywa