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Sport
Strand clinches win

A brave second-half performance saw Strand RFC claim an emphatic 32-25 bonus-point victory over Strand United in the pulsating WP Super League C derby at Abattoir Sports Grounds on Saturday 30 June.

The visitors overturned a massive 22-6 half-time deficit to bag an important victory. Even more remarkable was that Strand pulled off this feat with a man short after Clevin Hoffman was red-carded in the first quarter of the match.

United got off to a near-perfect start when Moeneeb Daniels opened the scoring for the home side. Daniels converted his own try (7-0). Soon afterwards speedy right winger Ridah Fanie crossed the whitewash for United’s second try; Daniels was unsuccessful with the conversion (12-0).

As traditional geographical derbies go, this one was played at high intensity and fast pace, despite the challenging windy and wet conditions.

Discipline is key in most of these encounters — and this one was no different. The discipline of the home side in the second half let them down, conceding too many penalties, although they dominated at scrum time.

United was awarded a penalty try at the end of the first half, along with a penalty, handing them a healthy cushion heading into the half-time break. Malcolm Alloys slotted two penalties for Strand (22-6)

A very inspirational and match turning half-time speech from Strand’s coaches led to a different visiting side taking the field in the second half. With the wind at their backs, Strand ran in four unanswered second-half tries.

Alloys was on song in the first half, slotting two penalties, but it was the flyhalf’s accuracy in the latter part of the game that led to an inspired victory. He dictated matters with ease and freed up the Strand backline, who were a man short for more than 60 minutes.

Nathan Lewis, Ricardo Williams, Riyaad Adams and Zhuan Booysen dotted down for the visitors. Alloys added two conversions, while Lewis also succeeded with a conversion.

Strand’s discipline and deft attacking prowess enabled them to add 27 points in the second half. The visitors’ forward pack were relentless on defence and held firmly at the breakdown.

The character of the Strand side proved to be the tipping point in this enthralling encounter; not many teams can come from 22-6 down, with one man short and claim a victory against a very strong United side, away from home.

Despite only walking away with a losing bonus-point, United can be proud of this performance.

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