Going gets tougher for Roses in SLA

Primrose narrowly lost 10-17 to NTK during the Western Province Rugby Football Union (WPRFU) Super League A (SLA) match played in Parow, at the weekend.

Primrose Rugby Football Club assistant coach Alaistair Theys shook his head in disbelief following his side’s 10-17 loss against NTK in the Western Province Rugby Football Union (WPRFU) Super League A (SLA) encounter in Parow at the weekend. 

Roses’ seventh defeat of the season kept them in 14th spot with five points after eight games. Their five points came from their fixture against Victorians which did not go ahead as Vics pulled out of the league.

Despite being in possession, a couple of errors in the opening ten minutes cost them dearly. However, the coach believes his side will bounce back.

“Two errors that we made cost us two tries. We made a few mistakes and had to pick it up from there. From our side, we had some opportunities but we didn’t take advantage. After the opening 10 minutes we had most of the possession throughout the game,” he said. Theys said playing away in rainy conditions affected their game plan.

“In slightly different conditions we could’ve walked away victorious. But we cannot take that win away from them (NTK) they deserved it.

Planning the way forward for his lads, Theys quoted their movie character Rocky Balboa saying, “It’s not how hard you can get hit, but how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward”.

“Consistency is key. The last two games we played started well. In this game, it wasn’t the best start. We’ll make some changes going forward,” he said.

Primrose have a game off this weekend, before they travel to Green Point to tackle a struggling Hamilton side.

Saturday’s game was important for NTK stalwart and eighth-man, Brandon Grant who celebrated his 100th cap for the team. Grant scored the second try of the game against the Roses. The victory lifted NTK to 13th place on the log with 11 points.

NTK have struggled in their second season in the SLA and will hope that the victory over Primrose will bring them a stroke of good luck and help them to move away from the relegation zone.

With Victorians pulling out of the SLA, it means only one team will get the drop back to Super League B and the competition is tight between NTK and Primrose.

NTK, however, are six points ahead of Primrose and will be looking to widen that gap.

Meanwhile, eighth-placed Hamilton risk losing a top six finish thereby failing to qualify for a place in the playoffs following their 0-5 defeat to False Bay at home at the weekend.

This was Hamilton’s fifth defeat in nine games this season.

However, while on 21 points, things could change for the Green Point outfit should they turn the rest of the season around.

The win for False Bay saw them creep up the top of the log with 40 points, two points ahead of second-placed Durbanville-Bellville (Durbell) after they beat SK Walmer 17-3 at the Green Point Track at the weekend.

False Bay will hope to maintain top spot when they face the hard-hitting Brackenfell side at home on Saturday.

In other action, Ravensmead-based Tygerberg are having a rollercoaster of a season following their five wins and four defeats in nine games. They played to a 21-27 defeat to Union-Milnerton at home at the weekend.

The Florida Park outfit are tied on 28 points with UWC, and will look to bounce back against a refreshed UCT side following their return from university holidays, at home, on Saturday.

Further north, Brackenfell are one of the few sides with less than 150 points scored against them since the beginning of the season in April. They have 133 points, False Bay has 111 points scored against them and Stellenbosch has 64 points scored against them in four undefeated games.

Brakkies have six wins in seven games, with their only defeat being the 35-41 loss to UWC in their fourth game of the season in May.

In other news, 10th placed Paarl will look to overcome a hill when they travel to second-placed Durbell on Saturday. A fortnight ago, the Paarl outfit suffered their seventh loss of the season to SK Walmer. The final score was 31-24. But they will be hoping for their third win of the season which will see them move up to at least eighth spot on the log.