Madibaz edge past UJ
A last-minute try from flank Chris Cloete saw the NMMU Madibaz take a dramatic 21-15 victory over UJ in Johannesburg on Monday.
The home side looked to have victory wrapped up, but NMMU had other ideas as Cloete - who scored five tries against Maties last week - crashed over from a driving maul to clinch victroy.
It is a second consecutive win to start the season for the Madibaz, following their big win at home against Maties last week, whilst UJ are still looking for their first win after ending deadlocked with defending champions UP-Tuks last week.
The home side struck first with wing Michael Haznar sneaking over in the corner after a number of phases in the Madibaz 22 had created an overlap out wide.
However, it was the visitors who would go into the half-time break with an 8-5 lead as a break from wing Yamkela Ngam in his own half saw him dot down between the poles, with fly-half Gavin Hauptfleisch adding the conversion.
The Eastern Cape side increased that lead shortly after the break, with fullback Donovan Marais crossing the whitewash after another great break from their own territory.
UJ wasted an opportunity from an attacking scrum, and the Madibaz backline pounced, with Marais rounding off a flowing movement that started in their own half.
The home side regrouped after that setback and launched a sustained period of pressure in NMMU territory which eventually resulted in lock David Antonites crashing over for a try in the corner from a driving maul.
The conversion from Schmidt levelled the scores at 13-13, and the game was there for the taking for either side in the final 20 minutes.
Both teams were reduced to 14 men when a scuffle broke out after the try was scored, with Haznar and Madibaz hooker Martin Ferreira both sent to cool off in the sin bin.
The final stages of the match were incredibly tense, with both teams looking to snatch a late victory. UJ fly-half Jaco van der Walt had a chance from a drop-goal but pulled it wide before Schmidt stepped up to slot the penalty kick that gave them a slender 15-13 lead.
However, the Madibaz were intent on playing right to the final whistle and they got the ultimate reward when Cloete powered over the line to seal a dramatic victory.
Tries: Haznar, Antonites
For NMMU Madibaz:
Tries: Ngam, Marais, Cloete
Cons: Hauptfleisch 2
Yellow cards: Michael Haznar (Foul play) Martin Ferreira (Foul play)
UJ: 15 Marais Schmidt, 14 PJ Walters, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Michael Haznar, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Jacques Pretorius (captain), 8 Kobus Porter, 7 Victor Seketekete, 6 Tiaan MacDonald, 5 David Antonites, 4 Shane Kirkwood, 3 Van Zyl Botha, 2 Francois du Toit, 1 Wiseman Kamanga.
Replacements: 16 Jannes Snyman, 17 Devon Martinus, 18 Fabian Booysen, 19 Dylan Peterson, 20 Lukas van Zyl, 21 Juan Kotze, 22 Peter Morton, 23 Hendrik Bredenkamp.
Madibaz: 15 Donovan Marais, 14 Tythan Adams, 13 Michael Bernardt, 12 Andile Jho, 11 Yamkela Ngam, 10 Gavin Hauptfleisch, 9 Daniel Acker, 8 Timothy Agaba, 7 Marcel Groenewald, 6 Christopher Cloete, 5 Cameron Lindsay, 4 Stefan Willemse, 3 Dexter Fahey, 2 Martin Ferreira, 1 Roy Godfrey (captain).
Replacements: 16 Greg Bauer, 17 Nicolas Roebech, 18 Louis Fourie, 19 Wade Elliot, 20 Ivan Ludick, 21 Stefanus Booysen, 22 Ayabula Dlepu, 23 Simon Kerrod.
Referees: Jaco van Heerden, Ben Crouse