(Photo Credit: Speedshots.co.za)
St John's showed today that the recipe KES followed to beat Affies is as effective when used against them, that is if they underestimate their opponents like Affies maybe did. St John's scored the equaliser (28-28) with a minute or so to go showing that passion and commitment are worth 23 - 30 points on the scoreboard.
The first 20 minutes of the game was an arm wrestle, with both sides giving their best. KES maybe just having the upper hand at that stage, and when KES scored the first try the writing was on the wall. However, St John's did not bother to read the writing and struck back almost immediately showing the passion and commitment that would carry them throughout the duration of the match.
KES lead 14-7 at half time and were quick to extend their lead to 28-14 with ten minutes to go. Then St John's came back with a vengeance. The try by flyhalf Bismarck Olivier set St John's on fire with scrumhalf Michael Bate's converted try leaving the KES supporters in absolute silence.
St John's played a very direct game with no frills whereas KES was maybe guilty of serious over-elaboration, happy to set up phases rather than using their bigger frames to dominate St John's. That said, the in your face defence of St John's just did not give KES the opportunity to use the flood of good ball that came their way.
KES definately the bigger and more talented side that should have won with at least 30 points but the passion and commitment shown by St John's, the equalising factor in a game that will be remembered for a long time to come.
KES: Tries: Joseph Iye, Nicolas Harris, Conan Davies, Eulon Redcliffe Conversions: Conan Davies (3), Eulon Redcliffe
St John's: Tries: Michael Bate (2), Jacques Bohlman, Bismarck Olivier Conversions: Bismarck Olivier (4)