Thursday, April 5, 2012

Pampas XV stage thrilling comeback to defeat the Boland Kavaliers in the last minute

The Pampas XV showed spirit to come back from 27-13 against the Boland Kavaliers and get their third win of their defence of the Vodacom Cup.

Ramiro Moyano slides in for the
Pampas XV's first try, Moyano is
now the second leading try scorer
in the tournament
After an early exchange of penalties between the Boland kicker Elgar Watts and Santiago González Iglesias, it was the Pampas XV who got the first try of the match with a flowing backs move getting stopped just 10 metres short of the line, but regaining quick ball and Tomás Cubelli who looks to be a very intelligent scrum half, set up a simple try for Ramiro Moyano to finish in the corner, his fourth of the tournament which leaves him second in the leading try scorers list.

González Iglesias showed why he is one of the best goal kickers in Argentina by slotting the conversion from the corner and also scored a penalty, but over the next 20 minutes of the match Boland took control and built a healthy lead for themselves.

Captain Julio Farías Cabello went
off injured after just 33 minutes,
and over the next 22 minutes
Boland scored 24 unanswered
points to take control
The maul yet again was the Pampas XV Achilles heel for Boland's first try which was scored by their captain Franzel September. With matches coming up against Super Rugby's stronger reserve sides, this issue, which has been the Pumas strength in the past, must be improved.

Boland took the lead just before half time with a fantastically finished try by Senan van der Merwe, who had no right to score in the corner but somehow managed to touchdown despite being shunted into touch by tow Pampas XV defenders. Boland's kicker Elgar Watts, like González Iglesias also was on good goal kicking form and didn't miss a kick all day and slotted this one from the corner.

After half time, a penalty from Watts, and then an try which was wrapped up and given as a simple gift to Boland as Román Miralles gave a tame intercept pass to the winger Brendon April who went under the posts. At this point with 55 minutes gone, Boland were leading 27-13, but then the Pampas XV mounted  a great comeback.

Tomás Cubelli has proved himself
a very intelligent scrum half and
one of the best things to come out
of this year's Vodacom Cup
After getting some possession and territory, the Argentines scored a try through little Tomás Cubelli wriggling underneath tacklers to score. And the Pampas XV from then on got more possession and territory but the Boland defence stood firm until the final minute when the replacement scrum half Martín Landajo just about managed to get the ball down from a short range pickup and secure the win for the Pampas XV.

The win will be very morale boosting for the Pampas XV (who have Leonardo Senatore arriving for the latter stages of the competition), but after a rest week they will face their hardest test so far in the only undefeated side left in their group, the Western Province, who put 50 points on the Boland and also beat the EP Kings who defeated the Pampas XV in the first round. The match will be a good indication of how far the Pampas XV can go in this year's tournament. However just to reach the quarter finals they now need only just to win one of their remaining three group matches.

TriesMoyano (16), Cubelli (56), Landajo (79)September (35), van der Merwe (39), April (54)
ConversionsGonzález Iglesias (19, 57, 80)Watts (36, 40, 55)
PenaltiesGonzález Iglesias (6, 29, 64) Watts (3, 42)

Pampas XV: 15 Román Miralles, 14 Facundo Barrea, 13 Lisandro Gómez Lopez, 12 Gabriel Ascárate (Javier Rojas HT), 11 Ramiro Moyano; 10 Santiago González Iglesias, 9 Tomás Cubelli (Martín Landajo 66); 1 Bruno Postiglioni, 2 Emiliano Coria (Roberto Tejerizo 78), 3 Juan Gómez (Francisco Piccinini 61); 4 Juan Pablo Lagarrigue (Tomás Leonardi 52), 5 Mariano Galarza; 6 Julio Farías Cabello (Genaro Fessia 33), 7 Rodrigo Bruno, 8 Lisandro Ahualli de Chazal

Boland Kavaliers: 15 Jacquin Jansen, 14 Senan van der Merwe, 13 Jonathan Francke, 12 Siviwe Magaba (Ricardo Croy 65), 11 Brendon April; 10 Elgar Watts, 9 Neil Papier (Bolla Conradie 50); 1 Charl du Plessis (Bjorgen Julies 38), 2 Hansie van Dyk, 3 Ross Geldenhuys; 4 PJ van Zyl, 5 Nolan Clark; 6 Franzel September, Alwyn Bester (Jerry Sefoko 71), 8 Zandre Jordaan