Bay men in blue too strong for Bloem’s force
Port Elizabeth Police won the “Battle of the Bobbies” and thumped Bloemfontein Police 35-11 in overcast and wet conditions in the opening round of the Saru Gold Cup at their Kemsley Park home ground on Saturday.
The Gold Cup is a national club tournament for provincial league winners and the opening victory for PE Police will stand them in good stead heading into the remainder of the fixtures.
The visiting men in blue were given the first opportunity for points in the first five minutes, when the Port Elizabeth side failed to roll away at the breakdown.
However, Bloem flyhalf Johannes Barnard failed to convert the threepoint opportunity.
The force from PE then attacked aggressively, eventually drawing first blood through a penalty by flyhalf Ruaan Allison in the 13th minute to go 3-0 up.
Seven minutes later, PE scored the game’s first try through leftwing Elton Loxton, who finished off a set piece from a scrum. Allison’s conversion attempt went wide.
Three minutes later, the visitors were on the board through Barnard’s boot, as he converted a penalty in the PE Police 22-metre area.
The penalty seemed to motivate the Port Elizabeth side.
They hit back with a try seven minutes from half time through hooker Stephan Deysel, who crossed the line off the back of a maul, as the home team went into the break with a 13-3 lead.
The second half resumed with the PE bobbies piling on the pressure, resulting in Bloem fumbling the ball in their own try area.
The loose ball was pounced on by PE flanker Frans Gerber as the home team scored their third try of the game.
Three minutes later, Loxton broke through the line to charge down a kick as he brought up his second try of the game for the PE bobbies to stretch to a 25-3 lead.
Hooker Ranier Steyn eventually scored for the visitors in the 59th minute off the back of a ruck. Left wing Marco Matthee missed with the conversion.
The PE Police ended the game with two tries in 10 minutes from Deysel and substitute Jaco Scott to wrap up a convincing win against their Bloemfontein counterparts.