Western Province has proven yet again that they they have some of the top schoolboy players in the country when they had both of their Craven Week and Academy sides in the final.
Both sides went unbeaten through the week and win the final games in their respective competitions.
The Academy side beat Border in the final game 45-17. They were not the only unbeaten side in the tournament. Phakisa Pumas CD, Valke and the Limpopo Blue Bulls went the week without loosing a game.
In 42 games this week the schoolboys scored all-in-all 392 tries which just gave us again some exciting matches.
With both Border and DHL WP going into the final game unbeaten we were hoping for a great final game to seal a great week for all the Academy sides.
Province was just too strong for the East London outfit beating them 45-17 at the end of 70 minutes.
It was a brilliant second half from Province that sealed this win after they on led Border 12-10 at the break.
Luke Burger and Canan Moodie each scoring brace of tries, while Jandre Burger (flyhalf) had a good day with the boot, slotting over five conversions.
The Valke were in charge of their final game against the Free State Cheetahs when they beat them 43-33.
With a lead of 31-21 at the the break they always had the Free State still in the game.
It was a great first half as they build nicely to the the win with the Free State never giving up.
With tries by Bishop Mohono and Duane Bloem each scored twice, accounting for four of the team’s seven tries, while Jason Edwards scored a try and kicked four conversions in a valuable display.
It was tries a plenty in this game with Free State scoring five tries but left them short at the end.
EP Elephants saved the best for last as the demolish the Phakisa Pumas when they beat them 80-7.
They already had a 59-7 lead at the break just showing their dominance in this match against the Pumas.
They scored a total of 12 tries with Cadan-wade Phillenzo Finnis getting four of those and Shemondrey Alex Hannes two.
They had the perfect game with the perfect attack but it was not just attack that stood out, they had a solid defence as well.
This was a real masterclass performance the Elephants produce in their final game of the week.
Griquas CD followed suit of EP Elephants when they also left the best for their last game when they beat Border CD 59-15 on Saturday.
It was the perfect second half from Griquas as they only had a 17-15 lead at the break.
It was most properly the best half of rugby we have seen all week from Griquas who scored an impressive 11 tries at the end.
It was also not just a full on attack as they kept the Border side scoreless in the second half.
Griquas lock Hansie Fourie was in top form, scoring a hat-trick, while Shane Alexander scored a brace and kicked two conversions.
The Cell C Sharks were on par when they faced SWD Eagles on Saturday.
It was a solid good performance from the men in black and white when they beat the Eagles 59-24.
They already build a great lead at the break when they went into the break 26-5 in the lead.
It was a real team effort as nine different players scored tries.
Their defence was also not bad as they kept SWD to only four tries
Two tries from Llewellyn Stadler and Jesse-Owen Denation gave Griquas an impressive 58-37 win over the Golden Lions XV.
What makes this even more impressive the men from Kimberly came back from trailing the Lions 24-22 at the break.
It was a great hard fought first half with both teams coming hard at each other but the second half Griquas got their mojo and just pulled away from the the Golden Lions.
It was one of the exciting matches of the day with both teams giving it there all and playing for the full 70 minutes.
SA LSEN had a convincing win over the SA LSEN XV in their final game of the week.
The SA LSEN team were in hot form in the first half as they dominated on attack and rounded off their chances well to take a 38-7 halftime lead and the finished the match with an impressive eight tries.
They faced tough resistance from the opposition after the break as they forced their way over the chalk three times, but it was a case of too little too late for them.
A strong second half by Thepa Trading Griffons CD saw them power their way to a 38-17 victory against EP Elephants CD, outscoring their opponents six tries to two.
The Eastern Cape outfit held a narrow 10-5 lead at the break, but Thepa Trading Griffons CD had too much firepower for them in the second stanza.
AJ Botha (centre) scored twice for the victors, while EP Elephants CD fullback Anton van der Mescht tried hard to keep his team in the game with a try, two conversions and a penalty goal.
Two penalty goals by Leopards flanker Stiaan Loots proved to be the difference on the scoreboard in their 30-24 victory against the DHL Western Province XV in a competitive clash.
Both teams crossed the tryline three times with successful conversions, but Loots’ kicked three penalty goals to one by the Cape side, which handed them the edge.
Interestingly DHL Western Province XV inched 21-17 ahead at halftime, but they were unable to hold onto this in a tough second half.
The traditional international between Namibia and Old Mutual Zimbabwe was hard-fought, but Namibia’s effective goal-kicking allowed them to sneak through for a 20-15 victory.
The teams entered the break level on 10-10, and they continued to throw everything at one another in the second half, but Namibia’s two conversions and two penalty goals by Geraldo Beukes (flyhalf), to only one penalty goal and conversion by their African counterparts, sealed the win.
Boland edged the Blue Bulls 26-23 thanks to their four tries to two, with Carlton Pieterse (flyhalf) accounting for two of the Winelands’ team’s tries and three conversions.
The clash was close from the outset, with Boland holding a slender 14-10 lead at the break.
The Blue Bulls battled to breach the defence, but they forced their way into the match with three penalty goals. This, however, still left them short on the scoreboard.
The Limpopo Blue Bulls wrapped up a successful tournament with their third win in as many games as they beat the Thepa Trading Griffons 37-26 thanks to their five tries to four.
The Limpopo outfit started well and took a 20-12 lead at the break, and they continued to take their chances, with Junior Mnisi (winger) scoring two tries and Zander Deridder (flyhalf) kicking three conversions and two penalty goals to keep the scoreboard ticking.
A strong second-half showing by the Blue Bulls saw them bounce back from 21-15 down against their Gauteng neigbours, Bidvest Waltons Golden Lions, for a 36-28 victory.
The teams were closely matched and it showed with the Pretoria side scoring five tries to four by the Jozi team. Blue Bulls winger Gopolang Makena scored two of his tries, while Ian Trollip (flyhalf) also made a valuable contribution with four conversions and a penalty goal, which kept the scoreboard ticking.
Phakisa Pumas CD held their nerve in a tightly-fought encounter against Cell C Sharks CD for a narrow 15-7 victory, which saw them finish the competition undefeated.
The boys from Mpumalanga built up a 10-0 halftime lead, but they were only able to add five points in the second half and the opposition seven. Such was the closeness of the match, only three tries were scored.
SA Rugby Academy Week Day Five results:
Namibia 20-15 Old Mutual Zimbabwe
Griquas CD 59-15 Border CD
EP Elephants CD 17-38 Thepa Trading Griffons CD
Cell C Sharks CD 7-15 Phakisa Pumas CD
SA LSEN 50-22 SA LSEN XV
EP Elephants 80-7 Phakisa Pumas
Boland 26-23 Blue Bulls XV
Griquas 58-37 Bidvest Waltons Golden Lions Academy
Free State Cheetahs 33-43 Valke
Cell C Sharks 59-24 SWD
Bidvest Waltons Golden Lions 28-36 Blue Bulls
Leopards 30-24 DHL Western Province CD
Limpopo Blue Bulls 37-26 Thepa Trading Griffons