In-form Ithembelihle take tournament title

IN AND OUT: Chubekile's Samkalo Ndlovu breaks away from a scrum in their clash against Cowan High at the Mzwandile Mali Memorial rugby tournament in New Brighton at the weekend. Picture: EUGENE COETZEE
IN AND OUT: Chubekile’s Samkalo Ndlovu breaks away from a scrum in their clash against Cowan High at the Mzwandile Mali Memorial rugby tournament in New Brighton at the weekend. Picture: EUGENE COETZEE

ITHEMBELIHLE flattened Thamsanqa High School 63-0 to win the inaugural Mzwandile Mali Memorial rugby tournament in a one-sided affair at the New Brighton Oval at the weekend.

Ithembelihle started the final like a house on fire and drew first blood through a try by impressive winger Ayabonga Mteto, who had a brilliant game, scoring 36 points courtesy of six tries and three conversations.

The first try came after eighth man Siya Charlie and flanker Sbongile Nqweniso carried the ball well from a scrum. From there, the floodgates were opened with captain Khanyiso Pini leading from the front and putting his name on the try scorers’ list.

Slovo Dzaka cut through the opposition defence to also dive home.

Mteto, who probably had the game of his life, was not done for the half as he scored a further three tries to take his side to a comfortable 39-0 lead at the interval.

The second half started a bit slower, with Thamsanqa High managing to keep the rampaging Ithembelihle at bay in the first 20 minutes.

But the New Brighton school quickly took control and ran away with the game.

The Kwazakhele boys could not keep up with their opponents as Charlie scored his second try of the game under the poles. Flanker Sedge Teyise, who worked his socks off throughout the game, was also rewarded with a try of his own.

Mteto rounded off his brilliant performance with another try. Fullback Omo Mcwabeni added the final nail to Thamsanqa High’s coffin by slicing through the opponents’ defence and converted the try.

In the third-place playoff Chubekile High demolished Cowan High 99-0.

Prop Zubenathi Sixonxo proved to be a thorn for Cowan, running in five tries, while centre Samkelo Ndlovu crossed the tryline four times.

In the fifth place play-off, the Eezie Fana invitation 15 outclassed Mzontsundu 27-0.

Tournament organiser Theo Pieterse said: “We are very happy with how everything went. It was well attended and I saw some great talent that just needs to be developed.”

 

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