Try blitz saves SA Schools

Three tries in six minutes midway through the second half gave the SA Schools B team a deserved 22-5 win over Italy U18 on Friday night.

The defeat at Witbank’s @lantic Park was the second for the tourists after they also lost 39-13 to the SA Schools A team at Vodacom Park in Bloemfontein last weekend.

SA Schools B led just 3-0 at the break thanks to a 9th minute penalty kicked by flyhalf Marnitz Boshoff. The South Africans dominated proceedings in the first half, but could not find a way through the resolute Italian defence.

The visitors had a chance to draw level on 16 minutes, but scrumhalf Andrea De Marchi pushed his kick wide.

The second half saw the home team start to control the possession and territory stakes and with centres Juan de Jongh and Wentsley Scott prominent they were making inroads into the Italian half of the field.

The Italians defended stoically, but the dam wall burst in the 51st minute when right wing Sizuyise Buthelezi rounded off a good team try. It was converted by flyhalf Marnitz Boshoff, who had a great alround game.

That was followed by fullback Damien Jansen van Rensburg’s effort three minutes later, before left wing, Baphiwe Mfundisi, showed great pace to score a fantastic solo try to take the result beyond doubt in the 57th minute. Boshoff converted the latter.

To their credit, the touring Italians never gave up and were rewarded with a consolation try five minutes from time by fullback Matteo Locatelli.

Scorers (the match is 35 minutes each way):

SA Schools - Tries: Sizuyise Buthelezi (51st min), Damien Jansen van Rensburg (54th min), Baphiwe Mfundisi (57th min)
Conversions: Marnitz Boshoff 2 (51st min, 57th min)
Penalties: Boshoff 1 (9th min)

Italy U18 - Tries: Matteo Locatelli (65th min)

By Andrew Hollely, at @lantic Park in Witbank