Attack held sway over defence on the second day of the U18 Craven Week in Rondebosch on Tuesday, with the Pumas, Griffons, SWD and Blue Bulls all recording wins.
The Pumas opened the day with a solid 41-14 win over Limpopo Blue Bulls, scoring several long-range tries that proved the difference between the sides. Not scared to attack from all over and with fullback Philasande Ntshapela a real threat from the back, the Lowvelders proved too fast and too slick for their Limpopo neighbours and laid down a marker for the rest of the teams to follow.
The Griffons were out of the blocks in a flash, racing to a 31-3 lead at the break against the Leopards. Their loose forwards were all over, providing a wonderful link between forwards and backs, delivering numerical advantages on attack to be exploited.
The Leopards sorted out their defensive alignment in the second half and were much more competitive, but there was always going to be only one winner after the strong opening half from the Northern Free Staters.
The Free State held a 14-11 lead at the break against SWD, before the Southern Cape side switched gear for a 29-19 triumph. Their pack took control in the second half while the backs ran with freedom. SWD also took every opportunity to kick for poles with four penalty goals proving instrumental in a good win.
The Blue Bulls and Golden Lions teams played a hard-fought encounter, but better decision-making helped the former claim a 38-19 win. The Bulls scored two early tries and looked like running away with the game, before the Lions recovered and countered with two tries of their own, one on the stroke of half time.
Leading 24-12 at the break, the Bulls had to repel an early Lions onslaught, during which they edged closer with a try, but the last quarter belonged to the boys from Pretoria side. Hooker Hanro Venter bagged three tries, while flyhalf Stehan Heymans did not miss any of his six kicks at goal.
On Wednesday, the undefeated Western Province clash with the Sharks, the WP XV face Border, undefeated Griquas will play Valke, while Eastern Province and Boland open the day looking for a first win.
Fixtures for Wednesday, 6 July
10:30am: Boland vs Eastern Province
12pm: Valke vs Griquas
1:30pm: Border vs Western Province XV
3pm: WP vs Sharks