The Riversmead South Coast Warriors’ Murray Cup campaign came to an end when they ran into a well-oiled Varsity College side at Riverside Durban North at the weekend.
The Warriors received a warm welcome from the Premier Division club but were met by cold and rainy weather.
The First Division visitors had to make do without two key players, flyhalf Darren Nyman and captain Chris Mitchell, who were sidelined through injury. As a result, the coaches had to think outside the box for the second week in a row. Head coach Juan van der Berg stepped up to fill the void at inside centre and opted for Donovon Horne at flyhalf.
With Mitchell and club secretary Shannon Potgieter among those cheering on from the stands, the Warriors put up a good fight against the Premier Division side and trailed 26-12 after a competitive first half.
The hosts pulled away in the second stanza and ran out 54-24 winners but not before the Warriors scored brilliant tries through Horne, Lunga Madlala and this season’s top try scorer Johan Gericke, who outplaying opposite number Ryan Elliot.
The Warriors second team, meanwhile, were optimistic and eager to test themselves against a Premier Division team. The step-up proved difficult and with a lack of experience, the visitors went down 66-0.
Coach Tiaan Gericke had brought on the likes of Jacques Badenhorst and Duan Strydom in the second half and the veterans’ experience saw the Warriors lift their game and restrict the hosts to just two tries. Gericke said they rued the quick tries they conceded in the first half that allowed the hosts to take the game away from them.
The Warriors Under-20s were on the winning side; they beat Rovers 38-7 at Douglas Mitchell Sports Grounds to set up a meeting against Midlands.
The Warriors thank their sponsors Riversmead Farm, Status Panelbeaters, Kencrete, Maser Security and Superbodies Gym for their support.