Grey High got their season back on track with a convincing 33-5 win against Michaelhouse at the Grey Easter Festival.
After their shock defeat to Marlow, Grey clearly did some soul searching and were a different side, scoring five tries to one.
Grey lost the toss and played into a howling wind. Coach Dean Carelse had assessed Michaelhouse and decided to concentrate on nullifying their forwards. The hosts kept the game tight and this tactic paid dividends with a 12-5 lead at the break.
Using the wind to their advantage in the second half, Grey hit their straps, with scrumhalf Scott McCarthy using his boot to keep Michaelhouse pinned inside their half.
The Grey loose forwards were outstanding in the second half with flankers Siya Kolisi and Renier Bester dominating the breakdown. This allowed Grey No 8 Siyanda Mangalifo to break through the Michaelhouse defence on numerous occasions.
‘After battling in the first half, playing into the wind, we were able to control the tempo of the game in the second,’ Carelse told keo.co.za. ‘We then started to play the game in opposition territory. Our loose forwards were outstanding and by stealing their ball we were able to neutralise their bigger forward pack.’
The victory was a significant boost to a young Grey side that have now realised they cannot rely on the success of last year.
Michaelhouse will have to address their breakdown issues and their rucking needs serious attention if they are going to be a competitive team this year.
Grey Festival results:
Graeme College 31 Nzondalelo 5
Kingswood 27 Centurion 20
Middelburg High 13 Nico Malan 10
Hilton College 28 Daniel Pienaar 14
Grey (PE) 33 Michaelhouse 5
– On Monday, Grey will play Kingswood College at 2:45pm with Michaelhouse taking on Nico Malan in the earlier fixture at 1:30pm