Powerful Bok Women Pack Overpower Cameroon in Opening 2024 Rugby Africa Test

The Bok Women could only score three maul tries in the first half of their opening African Rugby Cup tie, all by hooker Lindelwa Gwala, but things opened up after the break and they added six more tries to their tally to beat Cameroon by 55-nil in Madagascar on Saturday, 4 May, 2024. Photo: WomenBoks on X

The Springbok Women were comfortable first half leaders before opening the taps to run away for a huge 55-nil win over Cameroon in South Africa’s first fixture of the African Rugby Cup played at the Stade Makis in Antananarivo, Madagascar, on Saturday, 4 May, 2024.

Playing with a strong wind in their backs, the Bok Women could only score three maul tries in the first half, all by Lindelwa Gwala (hooker), but things opened up after the break and they added six more tries to their tally, with Maceala Samboya (left wing) grabbing a hat-trick in only 10 minutes.

With the South African pack setting the tone by overpowering their opponents in set-piece play, the second half replacements made a big impact as they opted to attack more with ball in hand and found gaps in Cameroon’s defence.

The first half was a scrappy affair as the strong and swirling wind made things difficult for both teams, but South Africa would have liked to make more of playing with the wind and led by only 19-0 at the break.

All three South Africa’s tries came from strong lineout drives, with Gwala the grateful recipient at the back of the mauls to score a hat-trick of tries.

The Bok Women’s changed side took some time to find their rhythm, but first-half injuries to Aliyah Tchogna-Njamen (prop) and Samantha Els (flanker) also disrupted the team in green and gold.

Cameroon were penalised quite a lot, losing Gladys Magala (prop) to a yellow card late in the half, but the Bok Women could not capitalise on this as they made too many unforced errors.

The second half was a vastly different affair, with especially Lusanda Dumke (flanker) and Byrhandre Dolf (fullback) making an impact off the bench.

Vainah Ubisi, who replaced Els on the side of the scrum, scored a clever try six minutes into the half when she jogged over after taking a lineout on the Cameroon 5m line and realised her opponents hadn’t engaged in a maul.

Veroeshka Grain (outside centre) then added her name to the score sheet when the ball was sent wide from a scrum turnover, before Samboya did more damage as she found space on the left hand side of the field to score tries in the 55th, 59th and 65th minutes.

Eight minutes before the end, Aphiwe Ngwevu (replacement centre) celebrated her return to the squad for the first time this year with a try from a quick-tap penalty to make it 55-0.

Cameroon had one last go at the SA try-line, but the Bok Women’s defence held firm and they came away with a good victory.

Rumandi Potgieter (scrumhalf) had a good game after a dominant pack, and Mary Zulu (flyhalf) deserves credit for her distribution and her kicking game too – both out of hand and at goal – where she converted five of the nine tries in very tricky conditions.

Scorers in South Africa 55-0 Cameroon opening 2024 Rugby Africa Women’s Cup Tie in Madagascar on Saturday, 4 May, 2024 

Springbok Women 55 (19) –
Tries: Lindelwa Gwala (3), Vainah Ubisi, Veroeshka Grain, Maceala Samboya (3), Aphiwe Ngwevu
Conversions: Mary Zulu (5)

Cameroon 0


Original Copy: SA Rugby, with editing by gsport

Photo Caption: The Bok Women could only score three maul tries in the first half of their opening African Rugby Cup tie, all by hooker Lindelwa Gwala, but things opened up after the break and they added six more tries to their tally to beat Cameroon by 55-nil in Madagascar on Saturday, 4 May, 2024. Photo: WomenBoks on X

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