The Old Mutual U16 Young Sables rounded up their participation at this year’s Grant Khomo Week in Oudtshoorn, South Africa with a 21-7 victory over old rivals Namibia on Thursday(9 July) morning.
If you are Zimbabwean rugby fan, at any level, you will know that the Namibians are not our friends on the park. They have broken many Zimbabwean hearts. What makes it more painful is that they always wait until the last-minute to shatter our dreams. Dreams of the Rugby World Cup, Junior World Rugby Trophy and most recently a last-ditch try that saw Namibia win 13-12 against the Old Mutual U13 Young Sables in White River, Mpumalanga last week.
Thursday morning was a different day altogether as the Old Mutual U16 Young Sables gave the Namibians no chance on their way to record Zimbabwe’s first ever win over Namibia in the U16 age-group.
Namibia had a shot to take the lead as early the third minute but Delron Brandt pulled the penalty wide keeping the Young Sables in the game. Zimbabwe’s breakthrough came in the form of a Munashe Kamera try , successfully converted by fullback Russell Biyason. Zimbabwe led 7-0 going into the break.
A spirited second-half performance earned victory for the Old Mutual U16 Young Sables but the half didn’t start too well as Namibia equalized through a converted try from Jaques Theron. Full of speed, Kamera found space again and scored another try for Zimbabwe and Biyason extended Zimbabwe’s lead with a true conversion. Leading 14-7 Zimbabwe didn’t look like stopping as pace came back to haunt the Namibians, this time in the form of St George’s sprint sensation Tafadziswa Bunu who scored Zimbabwe’s last try exactly a minute after Kamera’s try. Coca-Cola man of the match Biyason rounded up a good day at the office with another true conversion that left the scores at 21-7.
Zimbabwe’s Tegan Catteral was shown yellow with only a minute left to play but the Old Mutual Young Sables held on for a sweet victory over Namibia.
Team manager Crispen Mhike was ecstatic after the game giving credit to the boys for defending well against Namibia. Mhike was also grateful to the coaches – Scott Gray and Doug Trivella – for preparing the boys as well as Old Mutual for their sponsorship.
Two wins and one narrow loss is definitely not a bad tour, skipper Jack Charsley will lead his boys back home with their heads held up. The Old Mutual U16 Young Sables land at the Harare International Airport at 20:40 on Friday(10 July) night.
The Old Mutual U18 Young Sables leave for Stellenbosch on Sunday(12 July) and they will be hoping to continue flying Zimbabwe’s flag high just as their young brothers have done.