Two thumping done and dusted down and the worst yet to come, but the SA team is playing the U20 Nations Cup in Santa Barbara with a passion befitting the national colours, and will return from this testing ground much the richer.Canada opened first-half scoring with a try at the posts but failed to convert, and kicking left them down again when a penalty-kick was missed, but these gifts weren’t enough to salvage redemption as Canada went on to beat South Africa 27-7 in their second U20 Nations Cup match in Santa Barbara, on Sunday evening.

The junior national side played with speed and commitment, and managed to limit the north American side to a mere 0-5 halftime score, but elementary mistakes prevented any chance of the South Africans capitalizing on the opportunities that came their way.

The coach called early substitutions at lock and wing as the second half kicked off, but the new combinations failed to prevent a second try from Canada, and this time the conversion gave them a 12-0 lead.

Despite a Springbok women hungry for the ball, knock-on’s and dropped passes mean that they were continually having to turn around and fall back, gifting the Canadians the run of play, and with it another try around the outside.

With the Canadians leading 17-0, the SA centre broke the opposition defence and kicked to herself to circle the full-back and open scoring for the African team, before the successful kick made it 17-7.

The joy was short-lived as the Canadians immediately struck back to exploit the now-familiar route around SA’s wingers for another try, this time also unconverted.

As the match counted down the last minutes, the eager Canadians were alert to a South African team running out of steam, and added a converted try and a penalty kick to record a clear 20-point win.

South Africa’s final group-stage match is on Wednesday against England, a prospect which will be as daunting as it is likely to be educational. While SA lost 3-25 to the USA, England dispensed with England in a savage 39-0 win, before going on to maul the USA outfit 37-0 in their second encounter.

The local ladies will then finish a valuable expedition on Saturday, where they will face either of Canada or the USA in 3rd/4th place playoff.


Note: This report based on the recorded commentary available at Visit this page for links of all information on the U20 Nations Cup at the Scrum-Half Connection.


The South Africa U20 Squad to the Nations Cup:

Doreen Rakobela (Blue Bulls)
Judith Chauke (Blue Bulls)
Katlego Moremi (Blue Bulls)
Marithy Pienaar (Blue Bulls)
Mpho Moloto (Blue Bulls)
Sarah Ramoraswi (Blue Bulls)
Simone Vosloo (Blue Bulls)
Celeste Adonis (Boland)
Chrisna van Slicht (Boland)
Ntomboxolo Nanto (Easter Province)
Khayalethu Mbambula (Easter Province)
Mpho Mopeng (Free State)
Christa Simpson (Free State)
Maserame Bankiese (Griffons)
Jaime Norton (KwaZulu-Natal)
Nqobile Protecia Mhlangu (KwaZulu-Natal)
Noluthando Mbambo (KwaZulu-Natal)
Nompilo Mtshali (KwaZulu-Natal)
Nomthandazo Mathe (KwaZulu-Natal)
Nomzamo Ngcamu (KwaZulu-Natal)
Nonkululeko Zondo (KwaZulu-Natal)
Shona Leah Weston (KwaZulu-Natal)
Zanele Mbokazi (KwaZulu-Natal)
Nonkasa Fisiwe Zwane (Pumas)
Nicole Flandorff (SWD)
Elma Kemp (Western Province)