Leopards back on track
The Leopards got their Vodacom Cup season back on track when they scored seven tries in beating the SWD Eagles 47-8 (halftime 19-3) in a match played at the Wouter de Vos Stadium in Mafikeng on Saturday.
It was the Leopards' second victory from four matches this year, and victory over their South Eastern Cape rivals was the perfect way to respond to a disappointing 38-24 loss to Free State last week.
For the Eagles, their season just doesn’t seem to want to click, and this heavy defeat was their third from four matches. Crucially, however, they made the same mistakes as last week, when they went down 33-0 to Griquas.
The home side, playing away from the familiar surroundings of Potchefstroom or even Rustenburg, got off to the perfect start when fullback Shandré Frolick went over in the eighth minute for flyhalf Clayton Durand to convert.
Left wing Dumisani Matyeshana got in on the scoring act six minutes later when he crossed the whitewash before Eagles flyhalf Eric Zana got his team into the game with a penalty.
The Leopards scored their third try on the half hour when centre Joubert Engelbrecht crossed the line for Durand to convert and open up a 19-3 lead at the break.
Prop BG Uys gave his team the bonus point after 48 minutes when he crashed over to make it 26-3 with Durand’s conversion, which sparked a wave of substitutions from the Eagles’ bench.
The shuffles produced results almost immediately when hooker Dean Hopp went over to reduce the deficit, but the Leopards simply clicked gears and finished off with a further three converted tries to run away with things.
Engelbrecht grabbed his brace in the 63rd minute and was joined in the two-try club by Matyeshana in the 75th minute and Frolick a minute from full time.
Leopards 47 – Tries: Dumisani Matyeshana (2), Joubert Engelbrecht (2), Shandré Frolick (2), BG Uys. Conversions: Clayton Durand (6).
Eagles 8 – Try: Dean Hopp. Penalty: Eric Zana.