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VIDEO: Grey High 1st XV impress at Standard Bank Grey High Rugby Festival over long weekend

BY MARC JACOBSON - MAY 2, 2017
VIDEO: Grey High 1st XV impress at Standard Bank Grey High Rugby Festival over long weekend

The Standard Bank Grey High Rugby Festival over the long weekend on the 27th and 29th of April respectively, evidently showed to be a huge success with an abundance of school boy rugby talent, a vibrant atmosphere and exuberant sportsmanship throughout, from all players, supporters and parents alike.

Hosts Grey High, Eastern Cape’s school rugby flag bearers, set the tone for the festival and maintained a six-game unbeaten streak in 2017, added on from two stellar victories over Johannesburg opponents at the festival.

Playing both games as the grand match-up on each day, Grey High ground out a 36-22 win over a determined Jeppe Boys’ High side on Thursday (27th), whilst putting Parktown Boys’ High to the sword on Saturday (29th) with a battering 52-0 victory – to add the final cherry on top.

In the conclusive match-up against Parktown, Grey High upped their game from Thursday’s match-up, as they looked more clinical with ball-in-hand and sharper on defence – allowing the whitewashing eight-try to nil victory.

Subsequently, Grey fed off forced errors made by Parktown on attack, while maintaining a polished retreat in their attack, ultimately forming a fine link between backs and forwards.

Scrumhalf, Darren Vermaak starred as the specialist linkage and passer to get their game flowing. Eighth-man and Captain, Bevan Prinsloo, absolutely starred in both games at the festival, with clobbering ball carries, fast running, dominant defending and leading from the front on all occasions, with Grey looking better as each game trotted on.

Fullback, Sihle Njezula, also showed his dynamics on attack, and any bit of space provided to him showed costly to any defensive unit.

Leading 33-0 at half-time against Parktown, Grey already had the game in the bag and as a result, brought on all their substitutes, including the aforementioned starring players’ replacements – allowing them to cool off for a rest. With that, Grey still won the second half 19-0.

Ultimately, the score-line spoke for itself, as Grey dominated in all facets of the game, including their physical and set-piece plays against a side who were relatively evenly matched with Jeppe, and the fact that they righted most of their wrongs from that first game, shows Grey are positioning on an upward spiral.

The try of the week, however, surely went to lock Laken Grey against Jeppe, when brilliant, expansive interplay between backs and forwards, saw slick handling and offloads send the big lock in for an approximate 50-metre try.

Dale College also won both their games at the festival, beating Daniel Pienaar 33-12 on Thursday and a hard-fought 22-15 victory over Pearson High on Saturday.

Selborne College, who are stern EC rugby representatives, did not feature at the Grey High Rugby Festival due to their involvement in the evermore elite Wilderklawer Rugby Festival at Diamantveld Hoerskool in Kimberley, where they slumped 33-16 to the country’s number one ranked Paarl Boys’ High 33-16 and then 28-5 to Gauteng powerhouse, Monument.

All 1st XV rugby results at the Grey High Rugby Festival:

Thursday 27th of April:

Hudson Park 31-7 Despatch

Die Brandwag 24-42 Durban High School

Muir College 7-26 Parktown Boys’ High

Queens College 7-13 St. Johns College

HTS Daniel Pienaar 12-33 Dale College

Pearson High 27-13 St. Davids College

Ithembelihle 8-46 HTS Louis Botha

Grey High 36-22 Jeppe Boys’ High

Saturday 29th of April:

Muir College 0-25 St. Davids College

St. Johns College 10-22 St. Andrews College

Jeppe Boys’ High 31-34 Durban High School

Daniel Pienaar 20-24 HTS Louis Botha

Dale College 22-15 Pearson High

Die Brandwag 26-5 Hudson Park

Graeme College 46-0 Ithembelihle

Grey High 52-0 Parktown Boys’

Image: Grey High right before kick-off against Parktown Boys’ High on Saturday.

Watch for the overview and highlights of the 2017 Standard Bank Grey High Rugby Festival