Standard Bank Super League off to good start

Brian Munango and Andrew Poolman
The Windhoek Gymnasium Lions travelled to the coast to take on Walvis Bay Private School (WBPS) at Naartjie Park in their first game of the Standard Bank Namibia Secondary School Rugby (NSSR) Super League. The Lions, who won the competition last year, had to dig deep to defeat WBPS on their home turf, 31-17.

Walvis Bay had a narrow escape in the first half when Gymnasium flank Zack von Wielligh broke clean through from a 35-metre run but was tackled under the posts by wing Miguel Carballo, and referee Nicardo Pienaar ruled it a knock-on.

The score was 10-7 in favour of the Lions at half-time before they went on to score more tries in the second half. Right winger Suramie Kambobo had a fantastic second half after he intercepted a ball in the dying minutes of the game to score a wonderful try, which JW Visagie comfortably converted.

The Lions lost their hooker, Hendre Schrader, to a leg injury in the second half. He had been selected for Namibia’s upcoming tour in July to the SA under-18 Academy Week.

Michael Koopman, who captains WBPS, said: "We are really a good team; we just need to be more brave and train harder if we want to challenge for the Super League."

Tsumeb puts in the work

The first rugby team of Tsumeb Gymnasium, sponsored by Compack, registered the full league points from their 17-12 win against private school Elnatan in their Premier League match at Walvis Bay on Friday night.

The match was Tsumeb Gymnasium’s second in three days. On Wednesday, they lost 18-10 to Autohaus Windhoek Affies at Tsumeb. A rescheduling was then also arranged to play against Elnatan from Stampriet while both schools’ teams were at the coast for the Napso Sevens.

Friday night’s try scorers for Tsumeb were hooker Gerhi Opperman, flank Eduardo Amutenya, and centre Jami Viljoen, with one conversion by fullback FJ Fourie.

Elnatan’s tries were scored by Markus Meyer, their captain playing at inside centre, and prop JJ Louw. Flyhalf Antonie Pieters landed one conversion.

Solid work

Tsumeb earned full points by winning the match and also scoring more tries than the opposition.

Tsumeb coach Wouter Niehaus said: "It was a very physical clash, as it always is when ‘platteland’ teams play one another. Elnatan looks well coached, and the players they are drawing from Mariental make them a solid opponent.

"I am very proud of my team, which only contains two seniors and a bunch of fearless youngsters. Our supporters were all around the field and created the atmosphere as if Elnatan had to play against 16 of us."