KES ended their season on a high by claiming a hard-fought 32-8 victory over Maritzburg College in Johannesburg on Saturday. DYLAN JACK reports.
In an encounter tighter than the scoreline suggests, KES were just too strong in the second half and scored 22 unanswered points to come away with the win.
Mzwakhe Nkosi’s side so ended their season on a good note, following their disappointing loss to near-rivals Jeppe last weekend.
Despite the 24-point deficit in the end, Maritzburg can take a number of positives from the match. In the first half, especially, they gave as good as they got and were able to restrict the hosts to a two-point lead at the break.
KES got off to a dream start when scrumhalf Nicholas Harris broke from the back of a maul and beat two defenders on his way to the tryline. Maritzburg hit back through a penalty from flyhalf Sven Zunckel. However, the visitors were back under their poles minutes later when a lovely switch move allowed KES outside centre Ethan Fisher to burst through the defence and score.
The visitors narrowed the scores just before the break when hooker Junior Mndaweni muscled over from close range, making it 10-8 at half time.
The competitive nature of the match continued in the second half, but it was KES who extended their lead through Fisher’s second try. Inside centre Ngia Selengbe then went over after a strong run as the hosts took control.
Maritzburg were then reduced by a man when inside centre Jarred Hendrikz was sent to the sin bin for foul play. KES immediately capitalised as big tighthead Wayne van Niekerk bustled his way to the line.
KES – Tries: Nicholas Harris, Ethan Fisher (2), Ngia Selengbe, Wayne van Niekerk. Conversion: Eulon Redcliffe (2). Penalty: Redcliffe.
Maritzburg College – Try: Junior Mndaweni. Penalty: Sven Zunckel.
Photo: Ian Harris/Reds Rugby Facebook