On Saturday, 9 March, Glenwood High School from Durban kicked off their rugby season and hosted rivals’ Westville Boys High to kick start the season. The results of the pre-season friendlies indicated that the new Green Machine is ready for some exciting rugby and prepared to start their 2019 rugby journey. With much anticipation for spectacular rugby in the season, the supporters gathered to support their team.
Glenwood started the match with a dropkick deep into Westville’s territory. Both teams tried to gain the advantage line with strong runs and carrying the ball meters into the opposition’s territory. Westville was penalised early on for being offside at the ruck, right in front of the poles outside their 22m. Glenwood opted for the 3 points. Captain Joe Jonas made no mistake and Glenwood had an early lead.
Westville had a golden opportunity to score the opening try when Marthino van Wyk kicked the ball into a Westville player who punted it upfield. Westville managed to secure possession, but it was Joe Jonas with a try-saving tackle that kept Westville short and into touch.
Both sides had plenty of opportunities to score but this half was full of unforced handling errors and defensive mistakes. Westville was penalized and received a yellow card for a dangerous tackle. Glenwood used this opportunity with the extra man and used momentum to create some space for Van Wyk. He managed to get over the try line but unfortunately knocks the ball.
The shackles were broken shortly before half time as Mambo Mkhize knocks the ball forward after an easy pass from the scrumhalf. Ethan Smit snatched it up and sprinted through to score Glenwood’s first try under the poles. The conversion by Joe Jonas was successful and brought an end to the first half. Not the best half for either team as the season jitters crept up to them. However, Glenwood was leading 10 – 0.
The play was shifted back and forth to the 22m as both teams failed to score from their possession. There was some excitement when Jordan Hendrikse broke through the defence and made his way into Westville’s territory. He found Kaleb Thomas in support, but he was tackled. Westville turned the ball over but knocks it on again, giving Glenwood a wonderful opportunity with a scrum inside Westville’s 22m.
Westville’s Mambo Mkhize made up for his earlier mistake when he slipped through the Glenwood defence after winning the scrum on their 22m. He stepped to the outside and ran up the field. The great supportive play resulted in Westville scoring their first try. The conversion was successful and the score, 10-7 to Glenwood.
With about 20 minutes to go, Marthino Van Wyk ran into space again. He was tackled inside Westville’s half but managed to offload to Ethan Biljoen who sprinted for the corner. He was brought down inches away. With a quick ball, space and an overlap, Hendrikse passed to van Wyk who muscled his way over with two defenders. The conversion was missed and the score 15-7 for Glenwood.
With the clock ticking down Glenwood had one last scrum in the middle of the field. Westville’s defence let them down as they shifted too far and gave Joe Jonas a gap to take as he bursts through. He did not find support on the outside and decided to run straight into the last defender. His momentum carried him over the line. The conversion by Jordan Hendrikse was successful. The hard-fought battle between Glenwood and Westville was a victory for Glenwood with a final score of 22-7.
Tries: Ethan Smit, Marthino van Wyk and Joe Jonas
Conversions: Joe Jonas and Jordan Hendrikse
Penalty: Joe Jonas
Report by Alex van der Merwe
Photos Glenwood Media Club
Photo above: Jordan Hendrikse