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Monday, June 24, 2024

Yaw Penxe scores two tries as Sharks beat inexperienced Western Province

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Durban — It was like enduring root canal treatment for long periods, but the Sharks eventually prevailed over both Western Province and the gusty wind conditions in Durban to win this Currie Cup game 20-7 on Sunday.

It was a strange old encounter. The home team enjoyed a mountain of possession but found the Province defence and spiteful wind difficult to overcome, with the second and third quarters of the game delivering perplexing rugby as both teams did their best not to score.

The Sharks started well enough when fullback Yaw Penxe scored from a play set up by a very good tactical kick by scrumhalf Bradley Davids.

Veteran flyhalf Fred Zeilinga missed the conversion, but added a penalty from directly in front of the posts for an 8-0 lead.

Then came a special moment for Sharks right wing Phikolomzi Sobahle, who was plucked out of club rugby to make his Currie Cup debut. Just a few hundred metres from Hollywoodbets Kings Park is the College Rovers clubhouse and Sobahle’s teammates would have been celebrating there as he finished strongly in the corner after excellent lineout ball.

Fortunately for WP, Sobahle’s opposite number, Fazeel Robertson, struck back when a high ball could not be handled by Sharks wing Marnus Potgieter and Robertson gathered the bounce to score an easy try.

The Sharks dominated the second quarter of the match. They showed good patience in their phase play, but could not work out how to take their attack to another level when the visitors were resolute in defence.

In the first half, they had 64% of both possession and territory but led only 13-7.

The Sharks’ dominance in the forward exchanges continued into the second half, but they couldn’t fashion scoring opportunities from the wealth of possession.

All the time the home team were not scoring, the possibility of WP burgling an unlikely victory grew, but with 15 minutes to go, the hour-long deadlock finally was broken.

Penxe stabbed a kick over the defence, and won the race to the tryline where he gathered and scored.

Point-scorers

Sharks 20 — Tries: Yaw Penxe (2), Phikolomzi Sobahle. Penalty: Fred Zeilinga. Conversion: Zeilinga

Western Province 7 — Tries: Fazeel Robertson. Conversions: Kade Wolhuter.

@MikeGreenaway67

IOL Sport

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