WINDHOEK- A last minute try by fullback Chad Plato in the brim of time was enough to give the Namibia’s World Cup-bound senior rugby fifteen, the Welwitschias, a comfortable 28-22 win over visiting South African outfit Southern Kings at Hage Geingob Stadium on Saturday.
In a thrilling World Cup preparatory match in Namibia’s capital Windhoek on Saturday, the visitors were first to register their name on the scoreboard when they opened their account in two minutes through Pretorious Bader, who slotted home a penalty to give them an early 3-0 lead.
About 12 minutes later, the visitors again extended their lead through Howard Mnisi who scored a try to give the Southern Kings an 8-0 lead but Bader failed to convert.
Namibia then responded in the 20th minute, through a try by Torsten van Jaarsveld which was then converted by P.W Steenkamp to give the home side something to smile about as closed in to make it 7-8 as the opening half wore on. The visitors again responded five minutes later as they stretched their lead through John Jackson, who scored a try which Bader this time successfully converted to make it 15-7 in favour of the Southern Kings.
Southern Kings again broke Namibia’s wall as Jackson was again in the thick of things crossing over for another five-pointer, which Bader again easily converted to make it 22-7 heading into the changeover. In the 71st minute, Namibia regained their focus as they went on to add five points through veteran Eugene Jantjies’ try, which was converted neatly converted by Cliven Loubser as Namibia moved in to bring the gap down to 14-22. Three minutes later, budding fullback Chad Plato lifted the home side with a well-executed try and Loubser converted to narrow the score to 21-22. The combination between Plato and Loubser was again at play when Plate gallantly crossed over for the much-needed five points at the death and Loubser stepped up to covert and hand Namibia a 28-22 comeback victory.
President of the Namibia Rugby Union (NRU), Corrie Mensah said that the win was important as it will boost the players’ morale ahead of the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, which will see Namibia make her sixth appearance. “Obviously, today we didn’t play against a tier one country but we played against a well-structured and well trained opponent. So it tested us to the limit, and it showed that indeed our guys are well prepared for the World Cup and it will give them great courage to go forward. We needed this win. Namibians should start believing in this team as we draw close to the start of the World Cup” said Mensah.
2019-09-02 08:23:26 21 days ago