Saturday’s inclement weather put paid to the cricket and basketball fixtures between KZN10.com schools Kearsney College and Clifton College but there was a terrific first team water polo contest to wash away the blues.
Herewith a report from Kearsney:
Kearsney’s 1st water polo team played their final game of the season against Clifton on Saturday. The two sides were finalists in the recent Top 10 tournament which ended in a draw after full time and which Clifton won in the ensuing penalty shootout.
Tracey van den Aardweg feature image: Kearsney captain Tyson Andrews notched a hat-trick against Clifton on Saturday.
Expectations for this game weren’t high as Kearsney were playing their Stayers team, whereas Clifton opted to play their full team – which includes five KZN U19A players.
Both teams started tentatively, with Kearsney scoring the first goal through captain Tyson Andrews, but that was quickly cancelled out by a score from Clifton.
The teams then traded goals regularly with Kearsney goalkeeper Brett van Noordwyk keeping his team in the race with some excellent saving – and Kearsney’s Wesley Marshall scoring two superb goals to head into the break 3-3.
The 2nd chukka was tight with neither team being able to break the deadlock for the first six minutes. Kearsney’s 1st choice centre back Oscar Burgess-Barker was out through injury and things looked ominous when his stand-in, Tom Carmody, had to leave the water for medical attention after a blow to the eye.
However, that only seemed to invigorate the Kearsney Grade 9 as, once Tom returned, he had an excellent game – stealing the ball virtually at will from far more senior players.
Clifton managed to edge ahead 4-3 but that sparked a flurry of goals as Kearsney struck back with a goal from Luke Ambler-Smith followed by two counter-attack goals for Clifton to keep them 6-4 ahead at half-time.
The 3rd chukka started well for Clifton as they scored first to push them three goals clear and it was looking as if the momentum had shifted their way.
Kearsney’s Wes Marshall had different ideas though, and scored his third to give his side some hope. Clifton struck back, but Kearsney simply would not lie down and scored twice with Ambler-Smith completing his brace.
Kearsney were back in the game. Unfortunately for them, Clifton scored from a well-taken extra man to finish the chukka 9-7 ahead.
Once again the teams were deadlocked for the first half of the final chukka with Marshall coming close twice. A cheeky effort from Carmody broke the deadlock but was quickly cancelled out by another from Clifton.
Skipper Tyson Andrews netted his second to keep Kearsney in the hunt at 11-9. But Clifton were fortunate to get a penalty from a technicality and took the score to 12-9 with a minute to play. Andrews completed his hat-trick but it was in vain as Clifton ran out 12-10 winners.
Despite the loss, Kearsney can be very pleased with an excellent performance by their young team against one of the top schoolboy teams in the country.
Three of the four chukkas were drawn, and Kearsney have not scored more goals against Clifton before. It bodes well for Kearsney water polo in the years ahead.
The Kearsney College premier teams’ sports weekend was blue-chip basketball status and oh-so-close in the water polo final while the cricket could have been better, albeit against a Hilton College first XI that many regard as the strongest all-round team in the province and in the top echelon in the country.
Tracey van den Aardweg featured image: Tyson Andrews was named as Kearsney’s Most Valuable Player at the Northwood Stayers Tournament over the weekend.
Kearsney 1st XI 176 (Dylan Hulett 57, Louis Nel 48; Michael Booth 3/49 and a fifer for John Turner 5-37)
Hilton 1st XI 177/2 in 27 overs (Chris Meyer 65 not out, Nick Hatton 59 – for 1000 runs in a calendar year)
Hilton won by 8 wickets
Kearsney faced a formidable foe in the powerful Hilton outfit on Saturday and decided to take the bull by the horns, batting first after securing the toss. It was hoped that they could post a decent total, thereby generating some scoreboard pressure.
Kearsney enjoyed a dream start that few – if any teams – have been able to achieve against the potent Hilton pace attack. At (a scarcely believable) total of 61/1 after 5 overs- with a remarkable 48 off 30 balls from an on-fire Louis Nel – Kearsney could not have even imagined such a commanding position to be in.
However, the sheer pace of Hilton captain and genuine all-rounder Michael Booth (3/52) and head boy John Turner (5/37) was a game-changing factor. The tight leg-spin bowling of Colby Dyer also played a major role on a flat deck, which ultimately restricting free scoring.
Louis Nel’s upfront batting blitzkrieg aside, a patient, workmanlike 57 from the cricket-maturing Dylan Hulett was the only other significant contribution from what ultimately became a Kearsney innings under siege from what is arguably the best all-round bowling attack in SA first XI schoolboy cricket.
The Hilton bowling/fielding/catching pressure seldom lets a team off the hook – apart from the occasional unplayable Jaffa deliveries, wickets also fall due to injudicious shot selection brought about by the unrelenting pressure, and wickets also fall at crucial phases of the opponents’ innings.
Set a target of 177 in 45 overs, Hilton set about their task with intent and got the necessary runs with 108 balls still left in the bank.
Outstanding knocks from a long overdue Chris Meyer (65*) who has threatened many a time this season only to undo the initial great work, and grade 10 Nick Hatton (59) raced the Hiltonians across the line with a basketful of overs to spare.
It was yet another impressive Hilton display of batting, bowling and fielding… and this consistent Hilton side underlined once again why they are regarded as one of the top all-round cricket teams in the country.
* In this just his first year in the Hilton College first XI, Nick Hatton’s half-century saw the grade 10 go past the milestone 1 000 runs in a calendar year.
And with Hilton’s last first XI contest of 2019 still to come – the marquee Hilton/Michaelhouse match on Hilton’s Jack Hart-Davis Oval on Saturday, November 9 – allow us cricketing purists the hope that Nick’s rich vein of form continues.
Kearsney beat Hilton 57-39
Kearsney hosted Hilton College in the penultimate basketball game of the 2019 season for the schools’ premier teams. It started with a fast and furious exchange of baskets before the pace seemed to fizzle as the teams adjusted to the noisy fans and began to execute their game plans.
In the first quarter, Hilton had the best of the early exchanges; with Kearsney steadying the ship and applying better defensive pressure in the latter stage. Kearsney were able to score some easy baskets off Hilton’s defensive lapses in concentration, the first quarter ending 12-6 in Kearsney’s favour.
The second quarter saw a resurgence from Hilton, who seemed energised by the crowd, while Kearsney were unable to respond on defensive or offensive ends. Hilton won the second quarter 12-11 and played their best basketball of the match.
Kearsney regrouped at halftime, coming out focused to take command of the match in winning both the third (17-9) and fourth (17-12) quarters.
The fourth quarter saw a number of injuries to key Kearsney players, forcing them to rely on bench players to see out the game.
Kearsney’s depth of players has been one of their strengths this season and this was proved again in a match that was brutal at times because of the physicality as well as the sweltering heat.
It was not Kearsney’s best performance to date, but they managed to regroup and play with more intensity in the second half. Kearsney won the match 57-39, continuing their impressive win record at home.
Kearsney: Max Hastings-Brown (24 points, 18 rebounds); Oludolapo Morakinyo (7 points); Samkelo Jiyane and Aaron Smith (6 points each)
Hilton: Kwanda Mkhize (11 points); Johan van der Merwe (8 points)
Kearsney played in the Northwood Knights Stayers Tournament over the weekend. Buoyed by their recent success in making the Top 10 final, they were keen to gauge if the Stayers could live up to the high standards set by the 2019 first team.
Kearsney made a good start on Friday, beating the Invitational and Glenwood teams 12-5 and 10-7, setting them up for Saturday games against their opponents from the Top 10 quarter-final (Maritzburg College) and final (Clifton).
A convincing performance against Maritzburg College in the morning saw Kearsney run out 10-6 winners; followed by a well-disciplined 7-3 win against Clifton College, who were missing several players. This put Kearsney on course to play the hosts in the semis.
Clifton managed to set up a re-match with Kearsney for the quarter-final. Clifton were more up to the task this time and pushed Kearsney all the way. In the end, however, Kearsney were too strong and booked their place in the final by completing their double over Clifton 7-5 to go with the earlier 7-3.
The final was between Kearsney and Reddam Helderburg, who had cruised through their matches, winning each by six or more goals.
Kearsney may have been underdogs, but after a tense 1st chukka which ended 2-2, they raced to a 4-2 lead in the 2nd. The 3rd chukka saw Kearsney lose their discipline, allowing Reddam back into the game and to get ahead 5-4.
The last chukka was hard-fought, with Kearsney striking back to even things out. Shortly thereafter, Reddam scored a brace of extra-man goals. Kearsney were creating chances but couldn’t convert.
A good Kearsney long shot helped keep the pressure on Reddam, but it was too little, too late and Reddam held on for a 7-6 win.
* Kearsney College’s Brett van Noordwyk was named Best Goalkeeper of the Northwood Stayers Tournament while Kearsney captain Tyson Andrews (both grade 11) was named as his team’s Most Valuable Player (MVP).
Their excellent performances – and that of the team – suggests that Kearsney College water polo is in safe hands.
Kearsney College have had an outstanding weekend of sporting results in cricket, basketball, water polo and a squash tour to the Western Cape.
In addition, there are also three provincial cricket selections.
Tracey van den Aardweg feature image: Kearsney captain Josh Muller’s team were involved in an unforgettable KZN Top 10 final with the giants of water polo Clifton College.
Kearsney won the toss on a flat track and chose to bowl first to extract any early morning seam and bounce. It was soon evident that big totals would be the order of the day, yet there was also something in it for bowlers willing to toil hard.
Glenwood made steady progress despite losing wickets regularly. C Laycock (70) and M Halstead (41) were the pick of their batters. A 72-run partnership between L Moran and R Naidoo at the tail enabled Glenwood to finish on a formidable 250.
Excellent figures from Kearsney’s Matthew Murray (4/26) and Jared Brien (4/28) on the batter-friendly pitch ensured that Glenwood did not get 300.
Kearsney, a bowler light, set out to chase down the 250, backing themselves to do so with the extra batter. They did not start well, but with the classy Cade Carmichael in at the halfway mark, things looked positive.
Needing 160 off the last 25, with wickets in hand, it promised to be a riveting finish. And so, it was. Kearsney made 251/8 in the 48th over with two wickets in hand, thereby winning a very tense contest which ebbed and waned throughout. Carmichael (94), Chase Kelly (52) and Thomas Constable (31*) were the main contributors.
A substantial crowd witnessed an impressive run chase and the fierce competition between the two sides, interspersed with excellent individual performances, underlined why schoolboy sport is still a major drawcard.
Glenwood 1st X1 250/8 (Laycock 60, Halstead 41; Brien 4/28 Murray 4/26)
Kearsney 1st X1 254/8 (Carmichael 94, Kelly 52, Constable 31 n.o.)
Kearsney won by 2 wickets
Kearsney 1st team’s game against Glenwood was a decidedly one-sided match, with Kearsney coming away victors 116-11.
Kearsney played well from the start and the hapless Glenwood team were unable to prevent their opponents from scoring. The defensive intensity of the Kearsney team also forced a number of turnovers from the Glenwood team, which they were able to convert to easy baskets.
Oludolapo Morakinyo (20 points, 4 assists, 4 steals), Siyabonga Mpontshane (18 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists), Ryan Wimbush (18 points), Max-Hastings Brown (10 points, 9 rebounds), Lefa Motshele and Michael Delport (10 points)
Kearsney 1st team reached the final of the U19 KZN Top 10 water polo tournament held at Clifton over the weekend, eventually losing to the hosts on sudden death penalties after a 6-6 score at full time.
Kearsney beat Reddam and DHS, losing their next pool match against Clifton 5-4 in an extremely hard-fought affair. They then had to dig deep to beat Michaelhouse.
Kearsney showed good discipline to win Sunday’s quarter final against Maritzburg College 7-5; putting them into the semi-final where they beat Hilton.
Kearsney started well, racing to a 3-goal lead. Hilton fought back but Kearsney stayed ahead with a disciplined defence. The final few minutes were tense with a couple of errors costing Kearsney goals, but they had done enough earlier and held out for a very satisfying 7-6 win.
The final started similarly, with Kearsney playing a controlled first chukka and going 2 ahead through Luc le Clezio and Ox Carmody.
Clifton pulled one back but that was cancelled out the next attack by a scorcher from Wesley Marshall. Clifton’s superior fitness started to tell in the 3rd chukka with two goals in consecutive attacks. Kearsney looked to be struggling but Le Clezio put in a long-range goal to keep them in front.
The 4th chukka was incredibly tense as Clifton’s relentless counter attacks started to pay off, and they scored two goals to edge ahead. Superb defensive efforts from Josh Muller and goalkeeper Brett van Noordwyk kept Kearsney in the game.
Tyson Andrews then netted his first goal, despite Clifton’s full attention to even the scores at 4-4 with 2½ mins to go. As the clock wound down it seemed no-one would break the deadlock, but with 14 secs left, Andrews scored a magnificent backshot to send Kearsney into raptures.
There was still more drama. Clifton called a timeout with 14 secs of the game left, using a new rule which allows the goalkeeper over the halfway line. The Clifton goalkeeper swam the ball up and, with Kearsney having to mark the other players, scored with a stunning shot to equalise at the buzzer.
The game then went to penalties with both teams scoring 4 and missing 1, after which it went to sudden death. Unfortunately for Kearsney, the fairy-tale ending was not to be, as they missed their 1st penalty to hand Clifton the title again.
Ox Carmody received his 100th 1st team cap for the Michaelhouse match.
Kearsney 1st squash team travelled to Cape Town to play in the annual Wynberg Stayers Festival over the weekend, and returned unbeaten, with Kamo Bikwane and Luke van Eeden both being undefeated through the festival.
The festival draws some of the top boys’ teams from around the country. Teams attending comprise boys from Grades 8-11, making it a great pre-season opportunity to prepare for the 2020 season.
Beat Kingswood College 6-0
Beat SACS 4-2
Beat St Johns College 3-3 (won on games count)
Beat York High School, George 6-0
Beat St Stithians 5-1
PROVINCIAL SELECTIONS: CRICKET
Kearsney has three players selected for KZN Coastal cricket teams.
U18: Jordan Bamber and Cade Carmichael (still U17)
U17: Joshua Stocks
Josh Steytler, who won gold at the recent 2019 South African and African Duathlon Championships held in Cape Town, has just signed a 12-month contract to run for Hillcrest Villagers’ Athletic Club’s Elite running team.
The Grade 11 learner from Kearsney College will represent HVAC in the Junior Men’s category at running events until mid-2020.
Josh has been actively involved in competitive sports from a young age, playing club rugby (Hillcrest Villagers’ Rugby Club) and club soccer (Westville Soccer Club) from the age of seven, and made a KZN soccer age-group team at 12, when they won the SAFU League Championship.
His passion for road running saw him win the U19 junior Men’s category at the Forest Hills Spar 10km road race last month in a time of 35:03. He finished 11th overall.
But triathlons are his first love, so Josh stopped playing club rugby and soccer this year, in order to compete seriously in triathlons and duathlons.
Josh’s dream is to compete in triathlon at the Olympic Games. Last year he was awarded full provincial colours in both duathlon and triathlon and was the HVAC Junior Runner of the Year.
Earlier this year he won silver at the SA and Africa Triathlon Champs in Durban, before winning gold at the SA and Africa Duathlon Champs in Cape Town.
At these Duathlon Champs in Cape Town, Josh competed in the sprint class – a 5km run, a 20km cycle and a final 2,5km run – which he did in 16:47, 31:06 and 09:26 respectively, recording the fastest 5km run time in the U17 and U19 male categories.
The unfolding journey of Kearsney College old boy Mpumelelo Mhlongo and his Tokyo 2020 dream has many rooting for the young man from Durban.
Being born with amniotic band syndrome left him with a shorter right leg, a deformed club foot and several deformed fingers.
For many with such disabilities on the African continent the future would indeed look bleak. Stigmatisation and exclusion from many societal norms dooms many to a life of poverty and lack of opportunity.
Told he would never walk by the medical fraternity Mhlongo defied all the odds by taking his first steps at 6 years old and has been moving since.
His records bear testament to the work that he has put in.
He is currently the South African 100m and 200m champion and the All-Africa record holder in the 100m, 200m, long and high jump for my para athletic category.
He is also the world record holder for the T44 men’s 200m and long jump, and pending ratification will also hold the 100m world record.
The opportunities he has received has left Mpumelelo with deep sense of gratitude and a desire to give back to the community that is so dear to his heart.
One of those opportunities was receiving a scholarship at Kearsney College where he eventually rose to the level of Captaining his more able bodied school mates. It was during this time that he developed his great drive for sports.
He is presently completing his Phd at the University of Cape Town whilst also pursuing his Tokyo 2020 dream. It seems that everything he touches turns to gold as he has won undergrade Sportsperson of the Year, for an unprecedented, four years in a row.
Mpumi now aims to use his story, journey and eventual success in Tokyo, to put a deserved global spotlight on Africa’s indomitable para athletic talent.
“You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.”—Malcolm S. Forbes.
Truer have never been spoken and we wish Mpumelelo well as he reaches for his dream.
If you want to follow Mpumis journey here are his details:
In their final match of the 2019 hockey season Westville Boys took on Kearsney College on old boys day. In a fixture which saw the hosts seldom troubled for any extended period of time, a totally dominant display, lead to a 3-1 victory for the home team.
Kearsney started off the game at a frenetic pace as they harried and hassled the Westville players into unusual mistakes in the opening minutes.
The strategy seemed a good one as Westville play a slow, deliberate, possession based game which forces their opponents to cover allot of ground to cover passing lanes as the move the ball from side to side.
Kearsney, for their part, were successful in halting any Westville flow as they tore round the 3 schools astro.
For all their endeavour, though, they couldn’t quite get enough of the ball to create goal scoring chances of their own.
The quality of the Westville team soon started to show, however, as Ethan Matkovich and Wynand Steynberg gained control of the tempo of the game.
Their passing and great linking with Luke Allen and Randal Govender pushed Kearsney further and further back until the visitors were well and truly pinned in their half for large portions of the 1st half.
The first opportunity for a goal came in the 5th minute as a strong drive by Govender earned Westville a PC. A Luke Allen drag flick flashed past the left upright of Christopher Kiggen, a warning shot to the boys from Kearsney that this wasn’t going to be an easy afternoon.
With 3 seconds left in the 1st chukka a driving run from Govender earned the griffins another PC. The resultant save by Hayden De Kock must go do as one of the stops of the season. A Matkovich drag flick missile was incredibly swatted away on the goal line a few inches from De Kocks face.
A great piece of skill and life preservation from the defender.
The 2nd chukka had a familiar pattern to it as Westville’s calm, measured, approach eventually lead to a passing lane for the ball to get up field.
In the 23rd minute came their next chance as some great individual work from Joshua Davies created a little space for Joshua Korte to fire over the Kearsney crossbar.
That the half ended at 0-0 doesn’t reflect the total control that Westville had on the match at this stage. But, to Kearsneys credit, they had defended manfully up to this point in keeping Westville at bay.
The Griffins dominance was rewarded, however, shortly after the break, as a great run from Korte earned Westville a PC in the 31st minute. A simple push out to the 1st castle and a Allen drag flick found the back of the goal. 1-0 to the hosts.
Kearsney College, who had been content on sitting fairly deep on defence, immediately sprang into life and starting pressing little a bit higher up the field in search of a equaliser. Westville who had been in total control of the tempo of the match got a bit to casual in possession and were disposed deep in their half giving Calvin Davis a chance to shoot just wide.
Kearsney, sensing that Westville had lost a little concentration, continued to play with a lot more aggression and hunger. It was during one of the brighter passages of play from Kearsney that a brilliant 40 metre slap stick pass from Chase Kelly found James Maguire open on the edge of the D. With only the keeper to beat the striker unfortunately scuffed his shot.
In the 48th minute Kearsney were rewarded for their efforts with a goal of their own after some great work in the D by Menzi Mhlungu earned Kearsney a PC.
If there is anyone who has been a rock for the Kearsney team this season it has to be captain, Chase Kelly. The PC specialist has a bullet drag flick and has phenomenal strike rate at short corners.
With another one of his thunderbolts crashing into the back of the goal he levelled the scores at 1-1. Great rewards for the Kearsney boys as they came out with a great deal of intent after the Westville score.
With Kearsney playing such a high line in search of goals it left acres of space in the midfield and it was only a matter of time until the Westville passing game clicked into gear.
In the 52 minute a breakout lead by Korte headed up the field with Randal Govender and Mazwi Meyiwa in support. Korte bounced through the defence like a pinball as would be defenders were summarily dispatched as he sped determinedly up field.
Just as he was about to be enveloped a by a swarm of defenders he deftly passed to an unmarked Govender to his left.
The midfielder, showing a great degree of poise, pirouetted away from the advancing goalkeeper before rolling a simple pass to Meyiwa who tapped the ball into the empty goal making the score 2-1 to the hosts.
Credit must go to Kearsney who, in spite of conceding a goal, continued to press a high line in search of an equaliser. The Westville midfield and backs were just to calm and controlled though.
They picked their way through the Kearsney pressure with Govender, Davies and Korte being simply outstanding in this stanza as they moved purposefully up field.
It was the another midfielder, Jarrod Slanely who earned the PC for the 3rd goal in the 55th minute after a great lay off from Davies.
A drag out to the 1st castle set the table for Matkovich to drill a powerful drag flick to the keepers left making the score 3-1 to the hosts.
The remainder of the game turned into a bit of a procession as the Westville boys relished the last 5 minutes of their school hockey careers.
That this team finished undefeated is a testament to the quality of this bunch of boys and the work of Cameron Mackay, the names of Matkovitch, Steynberg, Allen, Govender, Korte and Davies will be forever remembered as being part of one of Westvilles finest 1st XI hockey sides.
The multi-talented Justin Waldman produced two great video pieces for the Kearsney College Founders day celebrations on the 18th May.
First is this stirring rendition of Shosholoza:
Then “A Million Dreams”, sung by the Kearsney College Choir at the Old Boys’ “Survivors'” service on Friday 17 May 2019 :
Great stuff from Kearsney College and Justin.
Looking ahead to Saturday by taking a look at last week’s epic
With Michaelhouse first hockey team at Northwood 11.45am on KZN10.com Super Saturday and Kearsney hosting Glenwood 11.15am on their Founders Day, let’s look at the MHS/KC epic that took place on Aitken’s Astro in Balgowan last time out.
An epic it was, a fitting contest for Michaelhouse Old Boys Day:
Tracey van den Aardweg feature image caption: Menzi Mhlungo on the attack for Kearsney in the remarkable 4-2 win over Michaelhouse at Aitken’s Astro in Blagowan last Saturday.
Michaelhouse took an early 2-0 lead that could have been 3-0 and even 4-0 before halftime on another day. Instead, the halftime winning margin was a gettable two goals and Kearsney knew it. A purple patch in the third quarter duly turned this clash on its head.
Here’s Jono Cook’s match report.
Kearsney pull it out of the fire to emerge victorious at Michaelhouse
After early Kearsney pressure it was Michaelhouse who brought the first save from the visitors’ shot-stopper Chris Kiggen. At the other end soon after it was Michaelhouse keeper Jason who was Williams called into action.
(The published shirt numbers didn’t always correlate with all the player names, so please excuse me if occasionally the wrong player name is used, but I would say most are correct).
A great goalshot from Kearsney vice-captain Chase Kelly earned the visitors their first penalty corner and Kelly induced a Top Gun save by Michaelhouse keeper Jason Williams!
Both sets of supporters were chanting and singing with the drum rolls ringing out across Aitken’s Astro.
A PC followed but the trap from the corner injection was untidy and danger was averted.
Prior to this clash, in the last 5 meetings, Kearsney had won 2 including the last 2 matches while Michaelhouse had won 2 and one match was drawn.
And 7 minutes into the match Michaelhouse captain Ben Rebeck showed customary skill and his trademark calm presence of mind to pick his spot, although it must be said that the Kearsney defenders didn’t engage him in an effort to close down the space and perhaps force a hurried shot.
Kearsney College 0
A Michaelhouse penalty corner evolved shortly after and up steps Ben Rebeck… Mugabi Lubinga traps the corner injection and Ben flashes his drag-flick into the Kearsney net!
Kearsney College 0
10 minutes gone
At the other end Kearsney poured on the pressure in an effort to pull one back but an excellent flat-stick tackle by Michaelhouse central defender Ethan Hartwell extinguished the threat. Then it was Kearsney striker Gontse Machaba who came close to opening the visitors’ account.
Let’s mix and match present- and past-tense in describing the rest of the match –
Undaunted, Michaelhouse earn a PC soon after and keeper Chris Kiggen saves – and another PC is awarded… Michaelhouse on fire… the Kearsney College boys behind the goals are hushed… It’s a Ben Rebeck drag-flick and a Chris Kiggen glove save.
Yet another Michaelhouse PC… The danger is contained and Kearsney break out fast from deep but the dangerous move is cut short just outside the strike zone. At the other end in this high-tempo game a Ben Rebeck power shot brings calls for a penalty stroke but the umpires are having nothing of it despite the Michaelhouse protestations.
Here’s the video
End of an action-packed first of four 15-minute chukkas it’s
Michaelhouse 2 (Ben Rebeck)
Kearsney College 0
Into the second chukka and a Mugabi Lubinga through-ball earns the 2018 SA U16 Interprovincial Nationals’ Most Valuable Player a penalty corner. The Ben Rebeck shot is defended very well by the Kearsney PC defence.
Meanwhile, Michaelhouse vice-captain Rorke Melville is marshalling his defence well in the face of Kearsney pressure. It’s tempestuous out there on Aitkens Astro.
Then it’s that perpetual energy machine Jacques Minnaar of Kearsney College who gets in a backhand goalshot! Followed by a super backhand shot by Kearsney livewire Jacques Minnaar that crashes into the side-netting!
A weaving run by Michaelhouse forward Michael Christodoulou looked likely to bring further damage to Kearsney but a great tackle by Kearsney College defender Calvin Davis restores order for the visitors.
And then – before halftime… It was an “Ooooo my WORD O-ooooh!” moment. A Mugabi Lubinga pass threaded through the Kearsney defensive screen was latched on to by the lateral-running Michaelhouse speed merchant striker Thabo Dlamini and the upshot was a Luke Gammie volley from inside the six-yard box that smashed into the Kearsney College crossbar like no other crossbar blast I have ever seen!
So, with a bit of luck Michaelhouse would have been 4-0 up at halftime and it can be argued that Kearsney would have found it extremely difficult to come back.
Kearsney College 0
30 of 60 minutes gone
Two 15-minute chukkas to go
Into the third chukka (or quarter) and Michaelhouse are not done yet, earning a penalty corner but the trap is untidy and the goalshot opportunity goes a-begging.
(As mentioned, the 2-0 deficit that might on another have been 4 was still well within this quality Kearsney side’s grasp if they turned up the heat. Another factor is that Kearsney appeared to be the fitter side and that certainly appeared the case in the second half, when Kearsney made it look easy in cutting out a loose Michaelhouse midfield and were thus able to fire the ball from deep straight to their high-hanging strikers).
But as the Goddess Hockey would have it the Kearsney boys break from deep and it looks like vice-captain Chase Kelly, according to the programme, who fires home the penalty corner!
Kearsney College 1
Then a minute or two later it’s a Kearsney College penalty stroke and Chase Kelly makes it 2-2 with 5 minutes gone in the third quarter.
Aaaaaa-aaand what an amazing turnaround! What an amazing Kearsney College third quarter! David Hudson makes it 3-2 to Kearsney College!
Kearsney’s Cam Duckworth and James Maguire are a box of tricks.
Now just 5 minutes to go in the third quarter
40 pulsating minutes of 60 gone in this cracker of a KZN10.com match!
The action continues in both strike zones at the end of the third of four quarters.
So, at the end of the third quarter it’s
Kearsney College 3
15 minutes to go
And just inside the final chukka it’s a wonderful goal by Cam Davis that takes Kearsney into a 4-2 lead with 13 minutes to go!
Kearsney College 4
47 minutes gone
13 minutes left
The drum rolls and chanting of the Michaelhouse boys reaches new heights as they call on their first hockey team to somehow pull it out of the fire. From an early 2-0 lead that could have been 3-0 and then 4-0 before halftime…
Kearsney College 4
Going into the closing minutes in this cracker of a KZN10.com clash the Michaelhouse lads strive to close the deficit but time is running out and Kearsney College have wrapped this up.
Another great Kearsney goalshot further underlines their second-half dominance, although the scoreline remains unchanged at
Kearsney College 4
Aaaaaa-aaand it’s GAME OVA-AAA!
Well done Kearsney College first hockey team for the fantastic comeback.
Hard lines Michaelhouse after such a great start.
1 Jason Williams
2 Oliver Morgan
3 Hilton Giles
4 Kenton Melville
5 Chris Christodoulou
6 Mugabi Lubinga
7 Michael Christodoulou
8 Rorke Melville (vc)
9 Thabo Dlamini
10 Ben Rebeck (c)
11 Luke Gammie
12 Chris Maartens
13 Ethan Hartwell
14 Michael Ross
15 Chris Brand
Head coach Richard Snowden
1 Chris Kiggen
2 Calvin Davis
3 Hayden de Kock (c)
4 Chase Kelly (vc)
5 Tom Constable
6 Josh Barrett
7 Cam Duckworth
8 Menzi Mhlungu
9 James Maguire
10 Jacques Minnaar
11 David Hudson
12 Ronan Farquharson
13 Dylan Thompson
14 Gontse Machaba
Head coach JJ Reed
*A last-minute goal saw Kearsney College seconds draw 2-2 with hosts Michaelhouse
Kearsney College 1
On a damp morning Kearsney College hosted Maritzburg College at the Masons Astro. Both teams have played quality hockey in patches this season so it was all set up for a great clash.
Kearsney immediately went onto the attack and spent most of the 1st and 2nd chukkas camped in the Maritzburg College half. It was down to two things, primarily, that stopped Maritzburg from gaining any rhythm: (i) Maritzburg conceding turnovers and (ii) some aggressive, tough-as-nails play from Ronan Farquarson and Jacques Minnaar of Kearsney.
Martizburg spent most of the 1st half on the back foot and Kearsney, relishing the unusual tentativeness of the Maritzburg lads, applied enormous pressure. The first opportunity came when an aggressive run by David Hudson opened up space for Campbell Duckworth to shoot – just wide. The signs were there that Kearsney would, sooner or later, make the breakthrough.
With all the sustained pressure it seemed just a matter of time till Kearsney would earn its first penalty corner. The PC set-up didn’t flow fluidly but enough room was created for James Maguire to fire past the right post.
It was from another College turnover that the first goal of the match was scored… a neat interchange between Duckworth and Farquarson opened up a passing lane to Maguire who, with just enough space, punched the ball into the bottom-left corner from top of the D.
A fitting reward for Kearsney, who had bossed proceedings up to this point.
Maritzburg were reduced to trying to catch Kearsney on the counter-attack but livewire Minnaar was an absolute pest, as his relentless workrate stifled much of Maritzburg’s attacking play.
His over-zealousness did earn him a green in the last moments of the half but the nuggety midfielder had certainly played his part in helping Kearsney dominate the 1st half.
The 2nd half was a complete reversal of the first and now it was College’s turn to spend large portions of the 3rd and 4th chukkas pressuring the Kearsney goal.
There was a sense of urgency about the College play which was surprisingly absent in the 1st half. Bruyns was tireless in running into space as he dragged the Kearsney defenders to and fro across the field. The passing was crisp and the movement decisive as Mthalane and Ngcobo probed down the left-hand side.
As Minnaar and Farquarson had done for Kearsney in the 1st half, it was now Maritzburg’s Prinsloo who entered centre stage in the midfield battles. It was a direct result of his energy and drive that Martizburg were awarded a penalty corner.
Martizburg’s timing was also off and In the ensuing scramble Kearsney were adjudged to have deliberately hit down on a Maritzburg stick and a penalty flick was awarded. Up stepped captain Pio for Maritzburg and he coolly tucked the flick away in the top-right corner.
Play continued with the scores locked at 1-1 until deep into the 4th chukka… and there perhaps came the defining point in the fixture. Prinsloo, who had been so influential in controlling the midfield for Martizburg, received a green card and was sent off the field. With the space now afforded to him, it was that man Farquarson (featured image. Photo Credit – Kearsney College) who took matters into his own hands – and it was after one of his telling drives and resultant pass to Maguire that Maritzburg conceded a short corner with a slender, but sufficiently meaty, 90 seconds left on the clock.
The penalty corner wasn’t the smoothest you will ever see, but there was just enough variation to give Chase Kelly time and space to smash the ball into the bottom-right corner, much to the delight of the Kearsney players and fans. It was now 2-1 to Kearsney with but a handful of seconds left.
The resultant Maritzburg possession didn’t amount to much, and the final whistle duly sounded. The jubilation of the Kearsney players at the whistle reflected just how much they wanted this – and what it means to topple the Red Army’s hard-earned reputation gained over the decades as one of the most potent forces in South African schools hockey.
And full credit must go the way of the Kearsney lads for the manner and forethought with which they went about their task.
As we look forward to a KZN10.com Super Saturday featuring Kearsney College hosting Maritzburg College and DHS travelling to Michaelhouse, let’s look back on the recent match-up between the fine young men from Botha’s Hill and the worthy lads from School.
Kearsney hosted DHS for a great Saturday afternoon’s running rugby in which neither team disappointed.
Tracey van den Aardweg feature image: Kearsney fullback Derick Marshall in possession during the win against DHS on Stott Field last Saturday
The visitors got the scoreboard rolling with a penalty in the 12th minute from a breakdown infringement in the Kearsney half.
The hosts responded quickly and scored a classic counter-attack try through fullback Derick Marshall, 8th man Massimo Fierro and winger Luke Dudley doing some good work before passing to scrumhalf Jordan Bamber who outsprinted the cover defence to score under the posts.
The versatile Bamber converted his own try for a 7-3 Kearsney lead.
The lads who stand by the motto Carpe Diem then scored from a trademark pick-and- go via prop Bradley Taylor after sustained pressure to stretch the lead to 12-3.
DHS responded well, scoring a converted try by captain and lock Taariq Kruger from a quickly-taken tap penalty, to reduce the deficit to 10-12.
Kearsney had the last say in the half with a spectacular try by fullback Derick Marshall after excellent play by centre Connor de Bruyn.
Half-time score 17-10 for the hosts.
Kearsney started the second half at high pace but unfortunately the good work was undone with a handling error in close quarters.
DHS clawed their way back into the game, scoring a deserved converted try to level the scores at 17-17.
Kearsney, in coming back, played good rugby and were rewarded with a converted lineout-maul try by hooker Reid Stuart to restore the lead again at 24-17.
DHS responded with a penalty to close the score at 24-20 to the hosts.
The hosts showed solid, resolute defence while DHS displayed exciting attacking skills.
With the try count reading 4-2, Kearsney were worthy winners.
Outstanding players for Kearsney were Marshall, Dudley, De Bruyn, Bamber, Fierro and captain Ox Carmody.
The win gives the Kearsney squad and coaches Barend Steyn and Nico Breedt momentum leading into Saturday’s much-looked-forward-to match with the Maritzburg College first XV on Stott Field.
Let’s hope Kearsney physio Scott Munroe has had a quiet week leading into this KZN10 Super Saturday muscle-up.
From the Durban High School perspective there is much in the way of good stuff for the team and coaches Ronnie Uys and Ruan Lombard to take away from the Kearsney clash ahead of Saturday’s encounter with Michaelhouse on Meadows – and a couple of finer points to iron out – perhaps from a defence perspective.
Again, KZN10.com hopes that DHS physio Marc Colia has enjoyed a quiet week.
* Meat of the text supplied by Kearsney – Jono mixed and matched, added bits and pieces here and there.