Rovers Community Cup Campaign Starts Well

Jonsson College Rovers kicked off their inaugural Cell C Community Cup National Club Rugby championship campaign on a positive note when they beat their visitors from Eastern Province GAP Despatch 38-17 in their Pool A clash on their home grounds at Reebok Park (KP 3) on Saturday. Rovers, with a lot of new faces in their arsenal, welcomed the return of Greg Goosen who has been plying his trade in Europe for quite a few seasons. The former South African Schools fullback, out of Kearsney College, slotted in to his old club, joining younger brother Mark in the impressive Rovers line-up, as though he hadnt even been away.

Rovers, clearly nowhere near to being at their best, still had little trouble disposing the boys from Uitenhague, out-scoring their visitors by four tries to two thus picking up full points in their opening match, but for head coach former Springbok, Blue Bulls and Sharks scrumhalf Robert du Preez there is still space for improvement needed from his charges.

The 2012 National Club Champions did however look impressive in stages and must be viewed as one of the favourites to take top honours even though it is early days yet. Their tries came from flank Murray Bondesio, Sergio Torrens, utility back Kyle Wilkinson and scrumhalf Tian Meyer with flyhalf Goosen adding a penalty and fullback Jors Dannhauser slotting three conversions and three penalties for 15 points. Despatch replied with a try, two conversions and a penalty from centre Monty Dumont and a try from their other centre Basil de Doncker.

All in all it was a weekend of huge surprises in the opening round of the competition, with three of the Wild Card outfits winning their opening rounds against more favoured sides. Raiders beat Noordelikes 45-12 in Pool C while in Pool B African Bombers beat Welkom Rovers from the Griffons 35-22 and in Pool D Roses United accounted for White River from the Pumas 65-36.

Jos Robson