Western Province boosted their play-off hopes with a 45-14 win over the Pumas in Cape Town on Friday.
Province ran in seven tries during the 80 minutes which secured them a bonus point and moved them up to third in the standings.
It was a strong first-half performance from the Capetonians who ran in five tries to lead 31-7 at the break.
It was the Pumas who opened the scoring when hooker Marko Janse van Rensburg put centre Alwayno Visagie into space in the midfield to sprint in for the first try of the game in the sixth minute. Flyhalf Chris Smith was successful with the conversion.
Province finally got their first points of the game in the 15th minute when wing Sergeal Petersen went over the Pumas’ tryline in the corner after some quick handling from his teammates in the strike zone.
John Dobson’s side were in again a few minutes later when Petersen was put into space down the touchline before passing the ball inside to Sikhumbuzo Notshe who had the pace to run in for his team’s second try. After 20 minutes Province were leading 10-7.
The Pumas were rattled and some brilliant defensive pressure in the midfield saw wing Seabelo Senatla intercept the ball to race away for a try in the 23rd minute.
After missing the first two conversion attempts, Josh Stander stepped up to convert the easier third attempt to give his team a 10-point lead.
Province secured the bonus point in the 32nd minute when scrumhalf Justin Phillips placed the ball at the base of the goal post after some sustained pressure inside the Pumas’ 22. Stander added the extra two points with the conversion.
It was one-way traffic and it continued in the 36th minute when Pumas’ fullback Devon Williams failed to hang onto a pass. Province forward Ernst van Rhyn gathered the loose ball before passing it to Senatla who ran in for another easy try.
At half-time Province had a commanding 24-point lead
Things got worse for the Pumas in the 53rd minute when loose forward Ernst van Rhyn crashed over the Pumas’ tryline from close range to score his team’s sixth try.
Replacement Jean-Luc du Plessis was successful with the conversion.
The Pumas thought they had hit back with a try in the 59th minute when wing Etienne Taljaard dived over in the corner. However, video footage showed the wing had his foot in touch before he grounded the ball.
The visitors had another try disallowed in the 72nd minute when the TMO ruled that lock Le Roux Roets performed a double movement on his way to the tryline.
Jimmy Stonehouse’s team eventually broke their drought in the 77th minute after flyhalf Smith scored a converted try.
But it was Province who had the final say with centre Ruan Nel scoring his team’s seventh try before full-time.
Man of the match: There were several backline players in the Western province team that dazzled with ball in hand. Fullback Dillyn Leyds was the star of the show on attack and gets the award.
For Western Province:
Tries: Petersen, Notshe, Senatla 2, Phillips, Van Rhyn, Nel
Cons: Stander 3, Du Plessis
Tries: Visagie, Smith
Cons: Smith 2
Western Province: 15 Dillyn Leyds, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Ruhan Nel, 12 Dan Kriel, 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Josh Stander, 9 Justin Phillips, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Chris van Zyl, 4 JD Schickerling (captain), 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Corne Fourie.
Replacements: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Neethling Fouche, 19 Salmaan Moerat, 20 Nama Xaba, 21 Godlen Masimla, 22 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 23 Edwill van der Merwe.
Pumas: 15 Devon Williams, 14 Morné Joubert, 13 Alwayno Visagie, 12 Ryan Nell (captain), 11 Etienne Taljaard, 10 Christopher Smith, 9 Ashlon Davids, 8 Jeandre Rudolph, 7 Willie Engelbrecht, 6 Francois Kleinhans, 5 Stefan Willemse, 4 Le Roux Roets, 3 Marne Coetzee, 2 Marko Janse van Rensburg, 1 Andrew Beerwinkel.
Replacements: 16 Simon Westraadt, 17 De-Jay Terblanche, 18 Hilton Lobberts, 19 Phumzile Maqondwana, 20 Ginter Smuts, 21 Jacobus Marais, 22 Ruwellyn Isbell, 23 Morgan Naude.
Referee: AJ Jacobs
Assistant referees: Paul Mente, Aimee Barrett-Theron
TMO: Joey Klaaste-Salmans
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