EP and Border women continue to dominate series

EASTERN Province and Border continued to dominate in the South African Rugby Union (Saru) women's interprovincial series at the weekend.

They registered their second round of victories, while 2013 finalists Western Province bounced back to secure their first win of the season. In an exciting second round on Saturday, defending champions Border thrashed KwaZulu-Natal 43-3 at the BCM Stadium in East London.

Meanwhile, EP edged the Blue Bulls 26-24 at Loftus Versfeld and Western Province thumped SWD 55-3 in Cape Town.

Border took control of their match from the outset with the team touching down seven tries to only a penalty by the Durban side. Four of their tries were scored in the first half, with Springboks Mandisa Williams, Ziyanda Tywaleni and Asithandile Ntoyanto earning one a piece, while Aviwe Peteni scored the other for a 24-3 lead at the break.

They built on this in the second half as Tywaleni crossed the tryline twice more for her hat-trick, while Williams earned her second.

Such was the team's dominance, KwaZulu-Natal battled to respond, and were forced to settle for only three points.

In stark contrast, the clash between the Blue Bulls and EP was a tight affair from the opening exchanges. Each side scored two first-half tries, but a penalty by veteran Springbok and Blue Bulls back Yolanda Meiring handed the hosts a 17-14 halftime lead.

But Eastern Province showed their fighting spirit in the second half as they tightened up their defence and continued to force their way over the advantage line, enabling them to double their try tally to four for the match.

In return, the Blue Bulls could only add one second-half try, enabling the Port Elizabeth team to secure a narrow 26-24 win.

The clash in Cape Town, meanwhile, was largely one-sided as Western Province asserted their authority to score six tries to none by SWD for an emphatic 55-3 victory.

The favourable result allowed Springbok women's prop Laurian Johannes to celebrate her special milestone of becoming the first women's player at the WP Rugby Union to earn 50 provincial caps in style.

The victory for Western Province also allowed them to get their campaign back on track following their narrow 15-12 defeat against Eastern Province in the opening round.

The defeat for SWD marked their second in as many matches as they went down 38-7 to Border in their opening match.