FNB Varsity Shield
The FNB UFH Blues beat the FNB WSU All Blacks 27-13 in round four of the FNB Varsity Shield on Sunday to consolidate their position at the top of the log. The Blues machine rolls on. Two days after thumping FNB Rhodes 46-0, Lumumba Currie’s side produced another physical display to claim their fourth consecutive win.
FNB WSU, who were the fresher team having enjoyed a bye in round three, were fiercely competitive at the lineout and breakdown. They failed to challenge the Blues at the scrum, however, and it was from this set piece that FNB UFH took control.
Flyhalf Keith Chiwara converted that physical dominance into territory and scoring opportunities. The Blues went to half-time with a commanding 18-3 lead, with lock Walter Moyo and centre Ryan Maree having crossed the tryline.
After the break, Chiwara continued to punish the All Blacks via his unerring boot. The Zimbabwe Sables No 10 finished the game with a personal tally of 17 points. The FNB UKZN Impi outlasted an ill-disciplined FNB TUT Vikings side to secure a campaign-boosting 17-16 win.
The Vikings made a physical statement in the opening quarter. The game changed, however, after captain Laro Delport was shown a red card for a reckless tackle in the 15th minute.
The Impi failed to take control of the contest and lost momentum after prop Tristan Trollip received a yellow card.
FNB TUT overstepped the mark again, though, when a high challenge by Lutho Tom landed the reserve loose forward in the sin bin on the stroke of half-time.
The ill-tempered arm-wrestle continued into the second stanza. Mauritz Maritz slotted two penalties to give his team the advantage as the game approached a thrilling climax.
FNB UKZN needed something special and No 8 Menzi Mabaso obliged when he powered through the defence to score the game-winning try.
The result sees the Impi consolidating their position in the top four, while the Vikings remain winless after four matches. FNB CPUT made wholesale changes to the team that thrashed the FNB TUT Vikings on Friday yet were still able to claim a comfortable 36-3 win against FNB DUT.
Outside centre Iwaan Bloys and left wing Keenan Williams scored first-quarter tries for the defending champions. However, FNB DUT dominated the next period of play and deserved more than just a penalty goal from flyhalf Minenhle Siwela for their efforts.
Having survived a lengthy onslaught on their tryline, FNB CPUT finished the first half with a flourish as Bloys’ second try gave them a 17-3 lead at the break.
The third quarter was a scrappy affair, with both teams losing players to yellow cards (FNB DUT replacement prop Pernel Ngubo and FNB CPUT fullback Keano Cookson).
It was still 14 on 14 when replacement flyhalf Feghon-Leigh Snyders scored FNB CPUT’s bonus-point try in the left corner.
With both teams restored to 15 men, the Cape Town students crossed for two more tries to add some gloss to the scoreline.
FNB Varsity Shield Round 4 results and scorers: FNB DUT 3 (3) – Penalty: Minenhle Siwela. FNB CPUT 36 (17) – Tries: Iwaan Bloys (2), Keenan Williams, Feghon-Leigh Snyders, Hugan Engelbrecht, Keanan Solomons. Conversions: Keano Cookson, Feghon-Leigh Snyders (2). FNB Player That Rocks: Iwaan Bloys (FNB CPUT)
FNB UFH Blues 27 (18) – Tries: Walter Moyo, Ryan Maree. Conversion: Keith Chinwara. Penalties: Chiwara (5). FNB WSU All Blacks 13 (3) – Tries: Bubele Gongqa, Sibusiso Hans. Penalty: Lwandile Mapuko. FNB Player That Rocks: Keith Chiwara (FNB UFH Blues)
FNB TUT Vikings 16 (10) – Try: Handre Horn. Conversion: Mauritz Maritz. Penalties: Maritz (3). FNB UKZN Impi 17 (5) – Tries: Zamakuhle Zulu (2), Menzi Mabaso. Conversion: Jarryd Nicholls. FNB Player That Rocks: Menzi Mabaso (FNB UKZN Impi)
Don’t miss the bumper FNB Varsity Shield festival at CPUT Sports Stadium on 1 and 3 April. All six matches will be broadcast live on SuperSport channel 207.
Round 5 fixtures (Friday, 1 April):
FNB UKZN Impi vs FNB Rhodes (15:00)
FNB WSU All Blacks vs FNB DUT (17:00)
FNB CPUT vs FNB UFH Blues (19:00)
Round 6 fixtures (Sunday, 3 April):
FNB Rhodes vs FNB WSU All Blacks (15:00)
FNB DUT vs FNB TUT Vikings (17:00)
FNB CPUT vs FNB UKZN Impi (19:00)