Maurice KambukweManqonda Ndlovu
Kudus and University of Namibia (UNAM) Rugby clubs were the form teams over the weekend, producing important results as the 2022 rugby season playoffs approach.
In Walvis Bay, a top-of-the-table clash saw coastal side Kudus maintaining their grip on the top spot by beating their closest rivals Wanderers with a 22-15 scoreline in a game that saw six yellow cards and one red card being brandished.
Log leaders Kudus scored three tries via Llyod Jacobs, Aurelio Plato and Joshua Jacobs, with Plato adding another five points via the boot through one penalty and one conversion.
Percy Nash chipped in with another conversion as captain Cameron Langenhoven saw red, while Lezandro Vos and Tersius Arangies were sin-binned for various offences.
The second team on the log, Wanderers, scored three unconverted tries through substitute Ryan Coetzee (two) and Obert Nortje.
Wanderers were undone by their indiscipline as four of their players were sin-binned at various stages of the game, leaving them unable to play their normal free-flowing game.
Hugo Bernadus, Christo van de Merwe, Driaan Voster and Lebeau du Preeze were sent to the bin during the match as Wanderers blew the opportunity to claim the top spot on the log with two matches remaining before the playoffs.
Speaking to New Era Sports, Esterhuizen said the match was tough and Wanderers gave them a run for their money. He added that the team have to fight hard to earn a victory.
“I would say it was our toughest encounter this season, Wanderers were so good that we had to fight hard to earn the victory. It was a physical match and we had to be mentally strong as well,” he said.
Moving forward, he said that they will continue taking every game as it comes and prepare for the play-off. “Our next game is as equally tough as this one, that’s why we will continue being ready for any match. No team in the league is weak and we don’t undermine any team or fixture. We will play against Grootfontein in our next match and I expect it to be tough and we have to remain ready all the way,” he added
In Windhoek, UNAM thrashed Reho Falcons by 88-07. In other matches played on Saturday, Rehoboth overcame United by 36-22 at home, while Western Suburbs got back to winning ways by triumphing over Grootfontein 31-17 at the Hage Geingob Stadium.
Following their victory over their closest rivals, Kudus (55 points) open up a four-point lead at the top of the table, while UNAM (48) closes the gap on Wanderers (51) to three points.
Suburbs (39) have it all to do in order to seal the last spot in the playoffs in fourth place, as Rehoboth (37) in fifth is breathing down their necks. Grootfontein is in sixth position (27), followed by United (7) in seventh and Falcons (4) anchoring the log with just one victory in 12 games.
In form… Coastal outfit Kudus coach Gawan Esterhuizen said the team had to fight their way to victory when they faced Wanderers in the much anticipated Namibia Rugby Union (NRU) league over the weekend. Photo: Nampa