Quintin van Jaarsveld
The Riversmead South Coast Warriors recorded one of the biggest wins in the club’s history when they thrashed Zululand Rhinos 137-0 at Douglas Mitchell Sports Grounds on Saturday.
The merciless hosts led 64-0 at half-time and ultimately scored a whopping 21 tries.
With the landslide win, the Uvongo-based side put themselves four points clear of Hillcrest at the top of the First Division South Section standings.
A win over Westville Old Boys – who they edged away from home last month – in the return fixture and season finale this Saturday, irrespective of the margin, will therefore earn them the league title.
Centres Donovan Horne and Rameez Allie both scored a hat-trick of tries, while five players – captain Chris Mitchell, flank Dawie Durrheim, wing Yonela Belani, fullback Senanelo Ndlazi and replacement Tristan Rothman – scored a brace a piece.
Loosehead prop Chris Sharpe, lock Jade Nyman, flank Cameron Camp, scrumhalf Nico Smuts and flyhalf Brandt Fields also crossed the chalk.
Conversions by Brandt (13), Smuts (2) and replacement Jaques Coetzee (1) saw the scoreline balloon to an unbelievable 137.
“We tried to outscore the Proteas,” skipper Mitchell joked during his post-match interview with eHowzit.
“I’m a very happy captain. I asked for a strong performance and they gave it to me. The coaches asked for an 80-minute effort and we delivered. Now we’re waiting for Westville to give them the same treatment,” he added.
Nippy No 9 Smuts scooped the backline Man of the Match award, while ever-present loose forward Durrheim earned a Wild Coast Sun golf voucher as the overall Man of the Match.
Team manager Francois Slippers congratulated both standouts and had special praise for Durrheim, saying, “I’m so proud of this lad. He’s struggling with an injury and it’s his last year with us, so he’s giving it his all before retiring.”
The second team also fired on all cylinders and claimed an impressive 41-12 win.
Backline Man of the Match Sam Nkwentsha, Johan Gericke and Graeme Bester each bagged a brace, with Keith Chiwara and Nhlanthla Lushaba also dotting down.
Forwards Man of the Match Duan Potgieter kicked two conversions, with Chiwara adding another.
Head coach Gromingo Mzunga said, “It was an awesome performance…the best performance of the season. I’m very proud of the boys.”
Consultant coach MG Roscher added, “It was a great performance by the boys. Many youngsters put up their hands and it was a good win for team. Hopefully we can replicate this performance in our next game.”
Saturday’s action at Douglas Mitchell Sports Grounds kicks off with the second team tackling their Westville counterparts at 2pm followed by the big First Division South Section decider at 3.30pm.