Juan de Jongh scored a brace in WP’s 49-14 bonus-point victory over the EP Kings at Newlands on Friday. JON CARDINELLI reports.
De Jongh featured prominently in the first 21 minutes, a period that witnessed 21 unanswered points by the hosts. Both of the Western Province captain’s tries came from turnovers, and in general, WP did well to punish EP's mistakes.
The result sees WP maintaining their position at the top of the Currie Cup log, as well as their unbeaten record. It will not be remembered as one of their most clinical performances, but perhaps it's encouraging to know they can improve on a seven-try showing.
Indeed, Province weren’t as effective on attack as they were on the counter-attack. It may seem a strange comment when you look at the number of points and tries scored, but the truth is WP should have won by a greater margin. EP were that bad.
It was the individual brilliance of Cheslin Kolbe that secured the bonus point in the 48th minute. EP had done well to resist WP initially, and even forced a turnover. Unfortunately, the attempted clearance was a shocker. Kolbe claimed possession, danced his way past several would-be tacklers, and scored under the posts.
Rynhardt Elstadt was yellow-carded for foul play in the 57th minute, but EP failed to capitalise on their numerical advantage. WP were less generous when Kings lock David Bulbring received his marching orders in the 70th minute. After a long period of attack, Elstadt crashed over for the hosts’ sixth try.
Province scored their seventh via a rolling maul. Siya Kolisi had scored from the back of the maul in the 17th minute, and it was the flanker who was credited with a second touchdown in the dying stages.
Western Province – Tries: Juan de Jongh (2), Siya Kolisi (2), Cheslin Kolbe, Kobus van Wyk, Rynhardt Elstadt. Conversions: Demetri Catrakilis (5), Kurt Coleman (2).
EP Kings – Tries: Paul Schoeman, Tim Whitehead. Conversions: Scott van Breda (2).
Western Province – 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Juan de Jongh (c), 12 Jaco Taute, 11 Pat Howard, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Michael Rhodes, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Brok Harris, 2 Stephan Coetzee, 1 Alistair Vermaak.
Subs: 16 Neil Rautenbach, 17 Pat Cilliers, 18 Manuel Carizza, 19 Rynhardt Elstadt, 20 Nic Groom, 21 Kurt Coleman, 22 Justin Geduld.
EP Kings – 15 Scott Van Breda, 14 Ronnie Cooke, 13 Tim Whitehead, 12 Dwayne Jenner, 11 Siviwe Soyizwapi, 10 George Whitehead, 9 Kevin Luiters, 8 Aidon Davis, 7 Paul Schoeman, 6 Shaun MacDonald, 5 Steven Sykes (c), 4 David Bulbring, 3 Tom Botha, 2 Edgar Marutlulle, 1 Lizo Gqoboka.
Subs: 16 Mike van Vuuren, 17 CJ van der Linde, 18 Thembalani Bholi, 19 Stefan Willemse, 20 Tobie Botes, 21 Shane Gates, 22 Siyanda Grey.
Photo: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix