Free State bag full house against Cavaliers
March 15, 2014

The visiting Toyota Free State XV started exceptionally well and collected a full house of log points as they beat hosts Regent Boland Cavaliers 28-20 (halftime 20-0) in their Vodacom Cup match played at the Wesbank Stadium, Malmesbury, on Saturday afternoon.

Winger Nhlanhla Mlondobozi dotted down to give the visitors an early lead but centre Niel Marais missed the conversion. Marais atoned for his miss by slotting a penalty to extend the lead to 8-0.

Livewire flanker Wayven Smith forced his way over the line for the second try of the afternoon and Marais was wayward with his conversion attempt again.

A loose ball was bounced on and Logan Basson, a late change after flyhalf Reinhardt Erwee pulled a hamstring during the warm-up, dotted down to open a significant gap for the Free Staters.

Marias finally managed to convert a try and the score of 20-0 remained unchanged until the interval.

Boland must have been read the riot act during the break and came out firing. Burly prop Ashton Constant barged over to get the Cavaliers on the board and Eric Zana converted to make it 20-7.

Marais added to the buffer with his second penalty of the match after Boland were penalised for an infringement on the ground.

Zana narrowed the gap with two well-taken penalties and had a chance to make it a seven point game after the Free State XV were adjudged to have transgressed at a scrum.

His attempt drifted wide and this turned out to be a vital miss in the context of the match.

When a silly kick by the Boland was fielded by fullback Luke Cyster he set off on a swaying run and found winger Sino Ganto. Ganto beat a handful of defenders before finding Marais, who passed to his centre mate, Nicolaas Lee, who gave a simple wide pass to flanker Zingisa April.

True to form Marais missed the conversion to leave to score on 28-13 with five minutes left in the encounter.

A late try by replacement winger Cheslyn Roberts had the partisan crowd on their feet and when Zana nailed the touchline conversion they nearly went ballistic.

Unfortunately for the home team there was to be no fairytale ending and the visitors held out to record a vital victory away from home.


Regent Boland Cavaliers – Tries: Ashton Constant, Cheslyn Roberts; Conversion: Eric Zana (2); Penalties: Zana (2).

Toyota Free State XV – Tries: Nhlanhla Mlondobozi , Wayven Smith; Logan Basson, Zingisa April ; Conversions: Niel Marais ; Penalties: Marais (2).

Copyright - SA Rugby. All Rights Reserved - Photos by Gallo Images