Progress clinch closely-contested game

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CALCULATED RISK: Zweli Sodladla of Progress looks for a way through in a clash against Harlequins in Uitenhage Picture: HEIN MCLEOD

Mkhululi Ndamase

PROGRESS edged defending champions Harlequins when they locked horns in an Eastern Cape Super 12 club rugby match – beating them 28-23 at the Uitenhage Central Field at the weekend.

The Group A game was always going to be a closely-contested affair as both teams know one another very well.

Progress got revenge after they were beaten by Quins in last season’s final.

Progress were determined to claim the bragging rights and went to the break leading 14-10.

In the second half play opened up with both sides leading at some stage of the game, but it was the Uitenhage side that had the last laugh.

In Queenstown, Caltex Crusaders humiliated Old Collegians 34-7 in their backyard.

Saders showed their opponents no mercy – running in five tries to return to Port Elizabeth with a well-deserved victory.

The visitors wasted no time getting across the tryline and went to the break leading 17-7.

In the second half, Saders continued where they left off before the break with their forwards proving to be a thorn in the side of the hosts.

In Group A, Gardens produced a match-winning second-half performance to claim a hard-fought 21-8 victory against Walter Sisulu University in Rosedale.

The hosts made life difficult for themselves by committing handling errors at crucial stages.

After 40 minutes it was 8-8.

The second half was a different story as Gardens showed their class and experience against the rookies.

It was a rusty performance but produced the desired results.

Kruisfontein started their campaign on a high, beating African Bombers 37-27 in Zwide.

The game got off to a good start with both sides determined to claim the first points of the season.

Both teams played good rugby but in the second half Bombers could not cope with the pace of the game.