Northwood 1st XV had their supporters sitting on the edge of their seats on Saturday, when they put in a great performance against Maritzburg College. Northwood quickly raced into a 3-0 lead (penalty by S Makhanye) within the first few minutes, as they dominated territory and possession. With the College XV clearly rattled, Northwood pressed on and were awarded a second penalty. Makhanye made the lead 6-0 and Northwood continued to play in College’s half. However, a rolling maul (which led to a try) and then a charge down in the Northwood 22m close to half time led to a soft try for College, giving them a 12-6 lead at half time.
The second half was a titanic battle, with both sides making incisive breaks. College were first to put points on the board, when the fullback evaded tackles to score a converted try. Northwood bounced back quickly, with Macdonald offloading brilliantly in the tackle to the speedster Sobahle, who scored a great wingers try (converted by Makhanye) to narrow the deficit to 19-13. With 15 minutes to go, the College fullback again evaded tackles and scored a converted try. Northwood had 2 further try scoring opportunities, but the last passes did not go to hand, resulting in a 26-13 victory for College.
This is a significant improvement on last year’s results and bodes well for 2014, as the team consisted of 9 Gr11’s. A great team effort all round.