Boland stutter to victory over Valke
Ken Borland
July 29, 2011
The Boland Cavaliers tried to play beautiful rugby, but ended up stuttering to a 52-10 (half-time 13-3) victory over the Valke in their Absa Currie Cup First Division match in Wellington on Friday.

While Boland secured an admirable scoreline to stay on top of the log, they only really played well in patches. The Cavaliers are known for their desire to play exciting rugby, but at times they erred in not building a solid platform first, before throwing the ball around.

The Valke defence was extremely disappointing at times, none more so than when they conceded the opening try after 11 minutes, Boland wing Cornal Hendricks easily rounding the last three defenders. The try put the Cavaliers out into an 8-0 lead, flyhalf Elgar Watts having earlier kicked a penalty.

Valke flyhalf Chanley Williams put his team on the board with a 21st-minute penalty, but the Cavaliers quickly replied with their second try. Livewire hooker Clemen Lewis made ground with his pick-and-go, and scrumhalf Bolla Conradie, who was a fine link between forwards and backs, then found Watts with a pass over the top of the defence, the flyhalf cantering in for the try.

Watts injured his shoulder as he was tackled over the tryline and went off; fullback Willie le Roux would then be tasked with both the kicking and number 10 duties.

Although Le Roux failed with that conversion, he had a good game overall and he stretched the lead to 16-3 with a penalty seven minutes after the break.

The Valke were quick to disrupt the Cavaliers at the breakdown, but would be penalised for hands in the ruck in the 50th minute, Le Roux slotting his second penalty (19-3).

The visitors then found themselves in deep trouble just five minutes later when Hendricks once again rounded the defence and scored his second try (24-3).

The Valke had been playing a pretty dull style of rugby for the first hour, but flyhalf Williams then tried something outrageous as he chipped the ball from his own in-goal line. It proved predictably disastrous as centre PJ Vermeulen caught the idiotic kick and fed wing Danwel Demas, who cut back and then sliced through to score under the posts.

Le Roux converted and there was no alleviating the pain for the Valke as Boland roared back on to attack from the kick-off. Jonathan Francke, who proved an excellent substitute at fullback, fought his way over for the fifth try and the sixth came with eight minutes remaining as Le Roux scored after an exquisite dummy and burst through a gap.

The Valke looked out on their feet but, to their credit, managed to find some extra reserves of energy and they camped deep in Boland territory as full-time neared. Wing Kyle Hendricks would be the man who was eventually put into the overlap, crossing for a consolation try converted by Williams.

But the Cavaliers were quick to ensure they had the final say, with replacement wing Brendon April gathering reserve scrumhalf Neil Papier's chip to score in the 82nd minute and complete a fine second half for the home side.


Boland Cavaliers- Tries: Cornal Hendricks (2), Elgar Watts, Danwel Demas, Jonathan Francke, Willie le Roux, Brendon April. Conversions: Le Roux (4). Penalties: Watts, Le Roux (2).

Valke- Try: Kyle Hendricks. Conversion: Chanley Williams. Penalty: Williams.


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