Port Elizabeth — THE Zimbabwe Under-18 rugby side suffered a huge defeat at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium here yesterday when they fell 21-68 to Limpopo Blue Bulls in their second game of the Craven Week festival.
Zimbabwe surrendered their 7-0 lead, having scored first in the game, and were trailing 7-21 at the break.
They never recovered with most of their problems coming from lost balls in contact. Scrummy Craig Bydawell came in with two tries in each half and it was his try, converted by flyhalf Rukudzo Gona, which gave Zimbabwe the lead.
Gona had missed two penalties in good scoring position that could have given Zimbabwe a more comfortable lead. Winger Lance Chikodzi crossed the chalk 12 minutes before the end of the game but the damage had already been done and Gona sent the bonus kick through while Brandon Mandivenga also converted Bydawell's second try.
This was all Zimbabwe managed to put on the scoreboard but the story was different for Limpopo who managed 10 tries (nine of them converted) having scored three in the first half, the other six came in the second period. Limpopo fullback Marcel Scholtz slotted in five conversions before he suffered a knee injury forcing flyhalf James Vorster to take the other five conversions. Limpopo's tries came from loose-head prop Trevor Nkwamba, lock Erick van Niekerk, Matjukinyane Molapo in the first half before Scholtz, first centre Johannes Smit, scrummy Righardt Kachelhoffer and substitute Floyd Ndlovu chipped in.
Zimbabwe: Thabani Mujeni, Kingsley Reid, Tapiwa Muringani, Nicholas Burnett, Shepherd Mhembere (Brandon Scheepers 48th minute), Leroy Sibanda (captain) Barend Moolman, Alva Senderayi, Craig Bydawell, Rukudzo Gona, Lance Chikodzi, Ian Watson, Dale Gibbons (Fungai Mandivenga 60th minute), Ryan Hutchings, Keegan Welder.
Limpopo: Trevor Nkwamba, William Johannes (Leonardus Wet Botha 51st minute), Nicholas Khangale, Sipho Siboza, Erick van Niekerk (Sipho Dougeld 45th minute), Mart van den Berg, Chris Durow, Leo de Wet Botha, Righardt Kachelhoffer (Andrain Maebane), James Vorster, Matjikinyane Molapo, Johannes Smit, Adrian Maebane, Voljoen Dreyer Marcel Scholtz (Manuel Pinto 55th minute).
Tries: Bydawell (two), Chikodzi
Conversions: Gona (two), Mandivenga
Tries: Nkwamba, Kachelhoffer, Molapo, Scholtz, Smit, Ndlovu, Niekerk, Durow, Welgemoed, Jordaan.
Conversions: Scholtz (five), Vorster (four).
Limpopo Under-18 . . . . . . . . .(21) 68
Zimbabwe Under-18 . . . . . . . . .(7) 21