Milestone for Vlam in Bay victory

Veteran hooker André Vlam van Vuuren earned his 200th cap in their WPRFU Super League A match against UWC at home at the weekend. Picture: Withers and son photography

In a festival of rugby at the Phillip Herbstein fields in Constantia, False Bay RFC overwhelmed the University of the Western Cape (UWC), in their WPRFU Super League A encounter.  

The Bay won 70-10 after leading 28-3 at the break. With the match day programme featuring the under-21 Currie Cup match between Western Province and the Free State, and four competitive contests between the students and the Bay, rugby enthusiasts were further enticed from their couches by a warm late-winter’s day which added to the occasion.

Led onto the pitch by veteran hooker, Andre “Vlam” van Vuuren, registering his 200th First XV cap, it was clear to the local support that the Constantia outfit were not about to make it three losses in a row.

False Bay had lost their previous two fixtures leading up to this all-important contest against Chester Williams’ Bellville students.

On the other hand, they were up against a very capable team who extended the Bay in the corresponding match last season, surprising with their fitness, stamina and competitiveness at the death.

The platform for the Bay’s victory was a dominating pack; their front-row of Johnny Raphael, Van Vuuren and David Geffen put their opponents to the sword, the stocky Raphael a handful for his taller opponent.

He was the odd man out of that trio, the only one not to score a try.

Locks Graham Knoop and Brandon Wood were immense. They both pilfered lineout ball from their guests and shone in the tight-loose, the latter delivering a man-of-the-match game in this department, a rare try just reward for his efforts.

Michael Botha at number eight, although only entering the fray at half time, put himself among the candidates for this frivolous award.

Danie Roux scored a brace of tries, Siya Alam got one as did his replacement Ewan Adams. Scrumhalf Niyaaz Johnson and replacement centre Riaan O’Neil bagged tries for the Bay.

Prop Msizi Zondi raised the ire of the legendary “Federation of Front Rankers” for his 40-meter dash to the line for his score.

The “FFR” as they are known, is a clandestine organisation of older generation props whose core belief was that no prop may score a try from further than five metres from the try-line. Zondi accepted his immediate life ban from the group graciously.

Such was the dominance of the home side, it was hard to identify players who stood out.

On the one occasion the students breeched the Bay defences. This resulted in an expansive 70 metre try by flyhalf Aidyn Cupido, at the end of some beautifully angled running and pacey catch-me-if-you-can challenges to the Bay line. False Bay have now completed their 14 league matches and have qualified for the knock-out stages of the SLA season.

They currently lie in third position on the table. The top six finishers qualify for these stages, with the top two enjoying an automatic semi-final berth.

UCT, Maties, False Bay and Durbell are guaranteed top four finishes. Durbell have an easy fixture against struggling Primrose and then quite the converse when they take on Maties at Durbanville.

Jon Harris is a member of False Bay RFC.

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