In a thrilling match played at a rainy Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium the match between the 1st and 2nd placed team on the Absa Currie Cup 1st Division log ended in a 26-26 draw: the second drawn match of the season between the EP Kings and the Ford Pumas.
Ill discipline almost cost the EP Kings the match as they were 1st shown a red card when Paul Perez was given his marching orders early in the game and then lock, David Bulbring, was given a yellow card and had to spend 10m in the sin bin. With two players out EP had to play a portion of the match with 13 men and the Pumas grew more and more confident.
The Pumas had a 16-5 lead going into the half and then moments after kick off of the 2nd half the Pumas scored a converted try and went into a 23-5 lead. Alan Solomons (Director of coaching) exclaimed “at 26-5 down and with 14 men I thought it would be difficult to get a result from the game. But the character shown by the guys to not only claw their way back but to draw the match was tremendous”.
Matt Sexton (Head Coach): “we gave away a lot of unnecessary penalties in the 1st half and we have to go back to the film and see what occurred”. No doubt said in reference to the number of penalties that EP gave away (and also the red and yellow cards dished out to the two players).
With only a few minutes left to the final whistle the EP Kings were down 26-10, the match turned on its head and EP’s tails were up as they went in search of an unlikely result. The 26-all draw not only deflated the Pumas but EP were able to pick up a 4-try bonus point from the match meaning that they not only got the 2 points for the draw but also the additional bonus point resulting in them finishing with 3 points and the Pumas with 2.
In essence this means that EP have widened the gap between themselves and the Pumas as they increased their lead from 8points to 9 points over the Pumas, and with only one match left in the round-robin stage EP have managed to get an unassailable lead over their closest challengers.
This result has given the men from PE a renewed sense of belief as they’ve now proved, not only to themselves, but also to their supporters, that no matter what the scenario is they are capable of delivering, even in the unlikeliest of moments.
EP KINGS – Tries: Marcello Sampson, Tiger Mangweni, Luke Watson (2); Conversions: George Whitehead (3).
FORD PUMAS – Tries: JW Jonker, Coenie van Wyk; Conversions: JC Roos (2); Penalties: Roos (4).