The Learners with Special Education Needs (LSEN) Week continued to dish up exciting matches at Glenwood High School in Durban on Tuesday as the tournament, which marks one of two SA Rugby Youth Week competitions this week, entered its second day.
At the end of the day’s play the Leopards, Golden Lions, Valke and Boland remained the only unbeaten teams.
The matches kicked off with Eastern Province registering a 12-12 draw with the Pumas after the Eastern Cape side built up a 12-0 lead in the first half, while, hosts KZN, delivered a fine second-half display on attack and defence to defeat the Blue Bulls EE 31-8. KZN centre Juanre Erasmus scored two of the team’s five tries, while scrumhalf Anele Banda converted three of them.
The Leopards again showed that they can be a force to be reckoned with as they beat the Griffons 48-14, thanks to their seven tries – two of which were scored by flyhalf Zolile Ntutela – which they supported with a solid defensive effort to limit the Welkom side to only two tries by centre Ntokozo Mbongo.
The Golden Lions started their clash against the Free State strongly as they took a 15-0 lead at the break. But the Free State fought back with intent in the second half and scored three tries, two of which were converted, while their Johannesburg counterparts were only able to add five points. This, however, was enough to secure the 20-19 victory.
SWD, meanwhile, bounced back from their defeat in the opening round in a tight tussle with the Blue Bulls, which they won 36-24, in which winger Jason Jacobs and centre Stanley Fry each contributed two tries towards the team’s six. Despite the defeat for the Pretoria side, the match was memorable for flanker Lethabo Mtsheni, who scored a hat-trick.
The clash between the Valke and Western Province was neck-on-neck from start to end as the teams threw everything at one another, which saw the Valke secure a nail-biting 15-14 victory after leading 8-7 at the break. Both sides crossed the chalk twice, but a successful penalty goal to add to the Valke’s one conversion handed them the edge on the scoreboard.
In the final match of the day Boland outplayed Golden Lions EE 43-7 compliments of a seven-try romp, in which flyhalf Shilton van Wyk scored two tries and slotted over four conversions for a personal total of 18 points.
The LSEN Week players will have Wednesday off to recuperate after the physically demanding opening two rounds, with the final round of matches being played on Thursday. The Valke will take on Boland in the final match at 2.20pm.
The National Girls U18 Week, meanwhile, will resume at the HT Pelatona Projects Stadium in Welkom on Wednesday after a rest-day for the players on Tuesday.
LSEN Week results: