An impressive 15 237 supporters turned up at the Danie Craven stadium for FNB Maties’ first home game of the season and the supporters were treated to a stellar performance by the Maroon Machine. Flank Marno Redelinghuys barged over the line from close range for the home team to score the first of their seven tries. It took only five minutes for FNB Shimlas to hit back, however in the 10th minute to level the scores at 7-7.
It was off a FNB Maties error: FNB Shimlas latched onto a loose ball which would find inside centre Saida Xamlashe who raced to the tryline in the face of a disorganised FNB Maties defence. A second try by FNB Maties via wing Edwill van der Merwe prompted the visiting FNB Shimlas side to call for a Power Play. Both FNB Maties centres were off and yet FNB Shimlas were unable to make their numerical advantage count. In fact, it was FNB Maties who added to their tally with a penalty via the boot of flyhalf Chris Smith for a lead of 17 – 7 after 22 minutes.
FNB Shimlas enjoyed much of the possession after the first strategy break and had the edge on attack, yet in the face of a determined FNB Maties defence, their efforts were found wanting. It would be in the 31st minute of the game where the stadium would be brought to its feet. The home team fed off the visitors’ error. The ball found van der Merwe 5m from his try line who found a racing Duncan Saal, who would sprint 80m for a try in the corner and five minutes later it would be the man in the pink shorts for FNB Maties, Saal again who would score under the posts for a converted try. Saal rounded off his hat-trick in the 68th minute in similar fashion as his second.
FNB Shimlas wing Athi Halom would score a good individual try for his team on the stroke of halftime. His well weighted chip, which he collected and dotted down in the corner was converted to give respectability to the halftime score of 33-14 to the home side.
While a spirited performance from FNB Shimlas in the second half saw them add one try to their half-time tally via Xamlashe, the home team never lost their dominance scoring three tries of their own including one by Smith who took the score to 56-21.
FNB Player That Rocks: Duncan Saal (FNB Maties)
FNB Maties: 56
Tries: Marno Redelinghuys; Edwill van der Merwe; Duncan Saal (3); Chippie Oelofse; Chris Smith
Cons: Chris Smith (5); Reinhardt Fortuin
Pens: Chris Smith
FNB Shimlas: 21
Tries: Saida Xamlashe (2); Athi Halom
Conversions: Lubabalo Dobela; Charl Naude (2)
FNB Maties: 15 Reinhardt Fortuin, 14 Duncan Saal, 13 Cornel Smit, 12 Chris Smit, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Chris Smith, 09 Remu Malan, 08 Janco Venter, 07 Marno Redelinghuys, 06 Mitchell Carstens, 05 Johan Momsen, 04 Ernst van Rhyn, 03 Neethling Fouche, 02 Wilmar Arnoldi, 01 Chippie Oelofse (C)
Replacements: 16 HJ Luus, 17 Ricky Nwagbara, 18 Piet-Louw Strauss, 19 Brandon Valentyn, 20 Stefan Streicher, 21 Logan Boonzaaier, 22 Elden Schoeman, 23 Munier Hartzenberg
FNB Shimlas: 15 Charl Naude, 14 Athi Halom, 13 Carel-Jan Coetzee, 12 Saida Xamlashe, 11 Francois Agenbag, 10 Lubabalo Dobela, 09 Badie Badenhorst, 08 Bertie de Bod, 07 Shlovi Nhlabathi, 06 Janco Cloete, 05 Henk Pretorius, 04 Raymond Woest, 03 Janu Botha, 02 Hanno Snyman, 01 Johan Kotze
Replacements: 16 JC Jansen van Vuuren, 17 Wentzel Vorster, 18 Mogau Maboleka, 19 Rholane Ncubuka, 20 Chris Dobby Roelofse, 21 Geraldo Booysen, 22 Francois Pretorius, 23 Sechaba Matsoele