Rugby 29.4.2017 09:34 pm

Nutshell: Cheery Kings claim record win against shocking Rebels

Coyi Banda had a fine game at fullback for the Kings. Photo: Richard Huggard/Gallo Images.

Coyi Banda had a fine game at fullback for the Kings. Photo: Richard Huggard/Gallo Images.

The team from Port Elizabeth’s upward curve continues as they show spirit and skill in the face of their expected relegation.

Deon Davids’ Kings claimed a fabulous record win in Super Rugby after demolising the hapless Rebels 44-3 in Port Elizabeth on Saturday evening.

The attacking threat of their backs was once again on show but the real joy from his performance came from their calmness and willingness to do the basics well.

Who was the star in this match?

Without a doubt winger Makazole Mapimpi. Currently there is no bigger attacking threat in local rugby than this man. He ran 145m, beat defenders at will, rounded off a try and provided brilliant support play.

Key themes and events

  • Six tries point to the Kings’ ability to attack effectively but, for once, they also had the platform of a stable scrum. It meant the backs didn’t need to create opportunities from scraps, as was the case earlier in this campaign.
  • ‘The Kings actually had far less possession in this game and had to make double the amount of tackles than the Rebels. To score 44 points illustrates how brilliantly they used their opportunities when they did have the ball in hand.
  • When captain and flyhalf Lionel Cronje left the field early in the second half with concussion, there was the risk of the hosts losing shape. But his replacement, Pieter-Steyn de Wet, calmed those fears with a composed performance and a fine individual try too. Are the Kings actually building depth?
  • The Rebels’ performance was, frankly, appalling. They had no shape on attack, missed 24 tackles and handled poorly. It’s a further indictment on the standard of the Australian conference. It also didn’t help that their only scrumhalf in the game, Mick Snowden, had to leave the field in the first half.

Point scorers

Kings – Tries: Wandile Mjekevu, Martin Bezuidenhout, Tyler Paul, Pieter-Steyn de Wet, Makazole Mapimpi, Coyi Banda. Conversion: De Wet (3), Lionel Cronje. Penalties: Cronje (2).

Rebels – Penalty: Reece Hodge.

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