Welwitschias dig deep in comeback win

17 July 2017 | Sports

The Hage Geingob Stadium in Windhoek was set ablaze on Saturday when the Welwitschias snatched the game from Zimbabwe in the dying minutes.

The Africa Gold Cup log leaders came from behind to beat Zimbabwe 31-26 on Saturday.

It is Namibia's third win in the cup after they thrashed Senegal 95-0 in the second match and Tunisia 53-7 in the first match.

However, the game was not a walk in the park for the home team as Zimbabwe gave them a run for their money.

In the first minutes of the game, Namibia came storming at the visitors, but Zimbabwe's backline was strong, offering the home side no chance to run through.

At half time, the game stood at 20-7, in Zimbabwe's favour.

Namibia came from the dressing room in the second half more determined. Even though the visitors were more disciplined in attack, the Namibians stood their ground and took advantage of some chances, which brought a difference to the team.

In the last 15 minutes of the game, Namibia brought on winger Johan Tromp who showed character and gave the team the extra push much to the disappointment of the Zimbabwean crowd who thought that they had the game in the bag considering the fact that they were leading throughout the match.

Tromp scored two tries for the home team.

Gino Wilson, Damien Stevens and Darryl de la Harpe also scored tries and JC Greyling was awarded the man of the match award for his exploits.

Rohan Kitshoff, the Namibian captain, said Zimbabwe was a tough test and it is just what they needed to dig deep for the win.

“The game against Senegal was easy, but facing Zimbabwe was not. They made us work hard for our win and we are grateful for the challenge they gave us. We need to step up and work much harder next time,” he said.

Zimbabwe's coach Cyprian Madenge said he felt sorry for his team for losing even though they worked hard.

“It just was not meant to be. Namibia was a massive challenge and we give them credit.”

Namibia will now play Uganda (away) in their third match and thereafter face Kenya.

Namibia has won the last three editions of the Gold Cup.

The winner of the tournament, which includes Kenya, Zimbabwe, Senegal and Tunisia, will qualify for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.


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