The match was the first of two at the SuperSport Rugby Challenge Rugby Festival played in the coastal town.

Ernst Stapelberg contributed 24 points and had a hand in many of the Bloemfontein side’s seven tries, including scoring a brace himself against the team he represented as a school boy.

It was the Multisure EP Elephants who drew first blood with a wonderful try that produced by a number of phases with fullback Michael Botha scoring off the final pass for flyhalf Oliver Zono to convert from under the posts.

The Toyota Free State XV struck back in the 16th minute when left wing Jamba Ulengo caught the men in red and black napping to score down the blindside. Stapelberg leveled matters with his conversion.

Minutes later, Stapelberg then forced his way over for a try of his own from close out and kicked the conversion.

The PE side then produced some enterprising play with some good inter-passing that saw right wing Michael Makase dot down in the corner to make it 14-12, but that was the last time they bothered the scorers.

Free State right wing Tapiwa Mafura scored his team's third try on the hooter for Stapelberg to convert to complete the first half.

A strong scrum soon after the break enabled Free State No8 Jasper Wiese to bombard his way over the tryline. Stapelberg added the extra two points.

With EP’s discipline a big problem, they were soon a man down and the heartland team exploited that. Ulengo then did some good work in drawing the defence to send centre Marlou van Niekerk over before Stapelberg scored his second try of the afternoon with 15 minutes remaining.

Free State flank Marnus van der Merwe then completed the rout to run all of 55 metres to score the seventh try.


Multisure EP Elephants - Tries: Mikey Botha, Michael Makase. Conversion: Oliver Zono.

Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV - Tries: Jamba Ulengo, Ernst Stapelberg (2), Tapiwa Mafura, Jasper Wiese, Marlou van Niekerk, Marnus van der Merwe. Conversions: Ernst Stapelberg (7).