The victory completed a dream season for Rustenburg Impala, who played in their third successive final, as they remained unbeaten and scored four tries or more in each of their matches.
They won the title in 2014, but stumbled against Durbanville-Bellville in a home final last season which saw them go down 31-30.
While DirectAxis False Bay will be disappointed by their defeat, they will draw immense confidence from the season, as their participation in the Gold Cup marked their maiden national tournament after claiming their first WP Grand Challenge title in 44 years.
The teams took a few minutes to find their rhythm after kick-off as the temperature lingered close to 40 degrees Celsius in Rustenburg, but once they hit their straps it was a matter of time before Rustenburg Impala ran riot on attack.
DirectAxis False Bay showed their intent early on by running hard at the hosts, and their dominance on attack earned them three opportunities to slot over penalty goals in first 11 minutes. However all three attempts were unsuccessful.
Their determined efforts to open up their account, however, paid off in the 17th minute thanks to a well-worked try by left wing Mustaqeem Jappie who kicked the ball through from a turnover and gathered it to score, which handed the Capetonians a 7-0 lead.
Rustenburg Impala, however, hit back with a try two minutes later as winger Dumisani Matyeshana crossed the try line after receiving the ball out wide, but the unsuccessful conversion left them trailing 7-5.
His team-mate, No 8 Leon du Plessis, added the team’s second try 10 minutes later as he crashed through a bunch of defenders to dot down the ball, but False Bay reduced the deficit to two points with their first penalty goal by fullback Adriaan Osman.
Impala had the final say in the half as Matyeshana rounded off another fantastic team try, which pushed them 17-10 ahead. They had an opportunity to score their fourth try on the stroke of halftime, but a knock-on denied them.
The hosts wasted no time adding to their score in the second half as flanker Justin Wheeler crossed the tryline two minutes after play resumed, which flyhalf Cecil Dumond backed up with two tries in three minutes.
The team built on this fine form which saw center Justin St Jerry and Wheeler added two more tries to take their tally for the match to eight.
In turn DirectAxis False Bay were only able to add two second-half tries compliments of Dylon Frylinck and Ashley Wells.
This secured a well-deserved 48-24 victory for Rustenburg Impala.
In a fitting end to the competition, meanwhile, the manager, coach, forward, back and club player of the year were named before the trophy handover.
Durbanville-Bellville’s Peter Virgin was named the team manager of the year, Alrico Beukes of RSK Evergreens club coach of the year, Tythan Adams of Your Communications College Rovers backline player of the year, Siyaya Brakpan’s Ian Oosthuizen forward of the year, and Leon du Plessis of Rustenburg Impala club player of the year. This is the second year in a row that Du Plessis wins the player of the year award.
All of the winners with the exception of Du Plessis will spend time at a top UK Club as part of an international exchange program sponsored by the British High Commission. Du Plessis spent six months overseas last year after winning his award.
Gold Cup final result and scorers:
Rustenburg Impala 48 (17) DirectAxis False Bay 24 (10)
Rustenburg Impala – Tries: Cecil Dumond (2), Dumisani Matyeshana (2), Justin St Jerry, Justin Wheeler (2), Leon du Plessis. Conversions: Cecil Dumond (3). Penalty Goals: David van Biljon.
DirectAxis False Bay – Tries: Ashley Wells, Dylon Frylinck, Mustaqeem Jappie. Conversions: Adriaan Osman (2), Andri Claassen.
Article by SA Rugby
Rustenburg Impala will host Saturday’s Gold Cup final against DirectAxis False Bay after both teams recorded nailbiting semifinal victories on a watershed Sunday afternoon of televised club rugby.
In the first semi, False Bay, who went unbeaten this year en route to their first Western Province Grand Challenge title since 1972, beat defending champions Durbell 41-35 in a nine-try thriller played in front of 4 000 fans in Durbanville.
The drama continued into the second match of the historic double-header when Brakpan staged a near- miraculous recovery before eventually going down 44-32 to Impala, the 2014 champions and last year’s runners-up, who advance to their third final in a row.
The closeness of the two contests were beautifully illustrated in the match stats: both games produced exactly 76 points and nine tries – 152 points and 18 tries in two matches and you get an idea just why the Gold Cup has struck such a chord this year with rugby fans across the country.
The decision by SA Rugby and Supersport to televise both semifinals on a Sunday was also a huge success, with the biggest crowd to ever watch a match at Durbanville turning out for the ground-breaking lunchtime match, whose social media #SundayShowdown tag certainly lived up to its pre-match billing.
This Saturday’s final will be an intriguing contest between unquestionably the two best sides in SA Rugby’s three-nation non-university club championship. On the one side, Impala will be playing in their third final, having already drunk from the iconic Gold Cup two years ago when former Springbok Hugh Reece-Edwards coached them to the title.
On the other side, False Bay will look to continue a fairytale season under their young coach Johnathan van der Walt, during which they have lost just once – against Siyaya Brakpan in round two of the pool stages.
The match will take place at the Impala Rugby Club, with kick-off time to be confirmed later in the week, but expected to be around 15h30, live on Supersport 1/HD.
Article by SuperSport
After 40 pool matches at 20 venues across South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe over the past five weeks, there is precious little to choose between the eight remaining Gold Cup teams contesting this coming weekend’s eagerly awaited quarterfinals.
SA Rugby’s three-nation championship for non-university clubs has exploded into life following a dramatic final round of the group stages and only a brave pundit would be prepared to put big money on any of the teams in the belief they are a sure bet.
For the truth of the matter is that there is very little to choose between the sides, the competitiveness of club rugby at the top level having increased exponentially over the past three years and especially during a landmark 2016 season which saw the Gold Cup move to a more logical post-season time-slot.
Saturday’s big televised match sees Pretoria Police – who last won a national title 20 years ago – take on DirectAxis False Bay in a mouthwatering Blue Bulls v Western Province club clash. Fittingly, the match takes place at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria, as a curtain-raiser to the Currie Cup semifinal between the same two unions (kick-off 3:10pm, DStv channel 197).
SA Rugby CEO, Jurie Roux, touched on the significance of club rugby’s newfound raised profile when he said: “Last week we had a Gold Cup pool match in Rustenburg that was a broadcast curtain-raiser to a Springbok-All Black test and this week things have gone up another notch.
“A north-south Gold Cup quarterfinal is big enough, but playing it as a curtain-raiser to a Currie Cup semifinal presents us with a unique double-header and provides yet more fantastic exposure for the clubs, their sponsors, and the Gold Cup brand itself. Once again I call on all rugby fans who want to watch some ‘feel-good’ rugby to tune in and be part of the amazing revival currently happening in club rugby.”
Fans across the country who cannot get to Loftus would do well to heed Roux’s call and tune in – club rugby is fast regaining its popularity of years gone by.
Police come into the game with a full house of 20 points, meaning that they are well set to host a home semifinal and final should they get that far. Having said that, they have not quite hit their straps in this year’s Gold Cup and Saturday could be the day they turn it on. In turn, False Bay lost to Brakpan in the pool stages but will have learned a lot from the ‘Battle of Brakpan’ and should push the Policemen all the way.
Pretoria Police (15-1):
Phumudzo Tshiovhe, Pieter Botha, Willem Odendaal, Pieter Strydom, Ivan Venter, Dillon Laubscher, Hendrik van der Nest, Louis van Biljon, Vincent Gwavu, Johan van Deventer, Divan Steenkamp, Jerry Sefoko, Rayno Wasserman (c), Johan Pieterse, Hannes Ludik. Replacements: Marthinus Hoffman, Boris van Jaarsveld, Imilius Keyser, Sam Niemand, Morne Hugo, Hendrik Pieterse, Tlhabana Motsepe.
DirectAxis False Bay:
Adnaan Oesman, Danie Roux, Byron Mohr, Riaan O’Neill, Mustaqeem Jappie, Andri Claassen, Dylon Frylinck, Ryan Olivier, Justin van Winkel, Brent Stevens, Brandon Wood, Graham Knoop (c), Ashley Wells, Andre van Vuuren, Wesley Chetty. Replacements: Dasch Barber, Wesley Futter, Willie Coetzee, Aiden Monk, Ridhaa Damon, Jason Pretorius, Roemark Smith.
The winner of the Police-False Bay quarterfinal will play a semifinal against the winner of the match in Cape Town between defending champions Durbanville-Bellville and SWD champions RSK Evergreens, who pulled off three dramatic come-from-behind victories in a row, including a famous win against FNB Wanderers in Windhoek last weekend, to reach the last eight for the second time in four years.
The champions have rebuilt themselves remarkably quickly under new coach Bobby Joubert and look well set to defend their title, especially if, as some believe, False Bay beat Police and next Sunday’s semifinal is at Durbell’s headquarters, where ‘Durbies’ rarely lose. But anyone who writes off Evergreens does so at their peril. They are expertly coached by Alrico Beukes, have the physicality to mix it with bigger teams, and have class backs including the brothers C-Than and Leegan Moos. And not forgetting one of the players of the tournament, flanker Freginald Africa.
Raymond Olivier, Roderick Moses, Francois Malherbe, Janco Gunter, Jason Kriel, Angus Cleophas, Gideon Thiart, Karl Liebenberg, Brendon Esterhuizen, Andrew Picoto, Michael Badenhorst, Daneel-Hermann Botes, Ashston Constant, Arend Brink, Ashley Kohler. Replacements: Albert van der Linde, Eduard Loubser, Stephen Potgieter, Conway Pretorius, Denzel Willemse, Cheslyn Roberts, Etienne Swarts.
Leegan Moos, Dowayne Smart, Divandre Strydom, Deon Stoffels, Clint Miller, C-Than Moos, Rudi Michaels, Gerschwin Muller, Buran Parks, Freginald Africa, Marvin November, Arden Wesso, Glenwyne Vaaltyn, Layle Delo Anvor Prins. Replacements: Byron November, Anston Bernardo, Isaac Treurnicht, Llewellyn Treurnicht, Mario Noordman, Chadley Stride, Gideon Lambrechts.
On the other side of the draw, Valke champions Siyaya Brakpan host Don’s Pawn Shop PE Police, who this year have surprised friend and foe alike after finishing 16th in 2015. Police have been very impressive this year, winning three of their four matches, but Brakpan have Bosman Stadium as their fortress and, as False Bay found out when the WP champions lost their first match of 2016 there a few weeks ago, it will take a flawless performance from the PE Bobbies to upset the Brakke.
Hagen Mumba, Thinus Ueckermann, Ronnie Roets, Christo Joubert, Leon Potgieter, Raydall Walters, Clayton Gindan, Theo Mynhardt, Francois Robbertse (c), Jaco Lotter, Dwane Morrison, Theo Becker, Jason Arundel, Ian Oosthuizen, Pierre Foord. Replacements: Izak Moller, Armandt Jordaan, Ricky Menezes, Wikus van der Berg, Shaun Botes, Gido Horn, Luzuko Ndanda.
Don’s Pawn Shop PE Police:
Ruan Allerston, Eben Barnard, Echard Jacobs, Alwyn Jordaan (c), Sebastiaan Loxen, Justin Peach, Daniel Vosloo, Lyle Walters, Frans Gerber, Ferdie Gerber, Hannes Huisamen, Wayne van Heerden, Dwayne Kinghorn, Stephan Deyzel, Lyle Lombard. Replacements: Marius Olivier, Matthew Moore, Chris Zeelie, Dewald Meyer, Kevin Plaatjies, Damien Moultrie, Kyle Scott.
The winner of the battle of Bosman Stadium will then have to negotiate a semifinal against either 2014 champions and last year’s runners-up, Rustenburg Impala, or KZN champions Your Communications College Rovers, who clash in Rustenburg in the final quarterfinal.
College Rovers have mixed memories of playing in Rustenburg. They won the last-ever club championships there four years ago, but lost twice over last year’s Community Cup Easter weekend to finish sixth out of eight at the tournament. But this is a different Rovers side compared to years gone by, with a bigger emphasis on team spirit and the collective, for which young coaches Derek Heiberg and Mike Vowles must take a lot of credit.
But this young Rovers side will have to be at their best to trouble Impala, who for 50 minutes were in imposing form against Pirates during last week’s 57-31 win over the men from Johannesburg, and who possess some of the best players in the tournament, including a deadly loose trio spearheaded by eighthman Leon du Plessis and flanker Justin Wheeler.
Xolani Nkosi, Dumisani Matyeshana, Justin St Jerry, Gysbert van Wyk, Aubrey McDonald, Cecil Dumond, Nico Kruger, Leon du Plessis, Justin Wheeer, Johan Engelbrecht, Tiaan Nel, Robbie Rawlins, Zander de Kock, Bruce Muller, Louis Hollamby. Replacements: Gavin Williamson, Ivann Espag, Henro Huyser, JP le Grange, Stefan Kruger, Francois van Biljon, McDonald Duma.
Your Communications College Rovers:
Gavin Scott, Mark Richards, Matt Phillips, Brandon Bailing, Tythan Adams, Chris Jordaan, Warren Randall, Kelvin Adam, Mesuli Mncwango, Jean Pretorius, Sanele Sibanda, Paul Bester, Luciando Santos, Jandre Jacobs, Jarrett Crouch. Replacements: Chris Kemp, Njabulo Mkize, Witness Mandhiza, Le Roux Viljoen, Dumisani Dyonase, Kyle Wilkinson, Gary Collins.
Knockout fixtures & Teams (15h30 unless otherwise indicated):
Saturday 15 October:
QF1 – Siyaya Brakpan v Don’s Pawn Shop PE Police (Bosman Stadium, Brakpan)
QF2 – Rustenburg Impala v Your Communications College Rovers (Impala Rugby Club, Rustenburg)
QF3 – Pretoria Police v DirectAxis False Bay (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria, 15h15 – SuperSport Channel 197)
QF4 – Durbanville-Bellville v RSK Evergreens (Durbell RFC, Cape Town)
Sunday 23 October (both matches live on SuperSport 1/HD):
SF1 – Winner QF1 v Winner QF2 (Time & Venue TBC)
SF2 – Winner QF3 v Winner QF4 (Time & Venue TBC)
Saturday 29 October (live on SuperSport 1/HD):
Winner SF1 v Winner SF2 (Time & Venue TBC)
Article by Duane Heath - SuperSport