Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Vultures demolish Swaziland

The Botswana national rugby team, Vultures, was too hot to handle for the Swaziland national team on Sunday as they thumped them 87-0 in their first game of the Six Nations African Cup 1C. It was a one sided affair in which the Vultures threw everything at the visitors, scoring the first try in a space of 5 minutes through the bulky number 1 lock-head, Tyrone Warburton. The Vultures hooker, Thato Maifala, added more points to the tally with a try and a conversion through excellent footwork in the 8th minute, giving the hosts a 12-0 lead.

The 12 point gap gave the Vultures impetus to be more adventurous and seek more points. A feast of points was on offer for the Vultures as the clear-skies of Botswana winter allowed them to play with more energy. Coach Ivor Greaves’s men came harder on the weak Swaziland side, which looked vulnerable as they failed to stop a series of attacks from the hosts. Most of the game was played on Swaziland’s half with the talented centre, Hugo Botha, marshalling the midfield. Hugo kept the Swaziland players at bay and made sure that they don’t cross over to their opponents’ half. Fullback Edward Oosthuizen had an easy task on Sunday as he easily parried any threats on the Vultures defense.

Botha anchored the middle of the park very well while number 21, Matlhogonolo Mohutsiwa, and number 13, Jeremy Babbage, both back-liners, launched attacks on Swaziland from the back. Good distribution orchestrated by the Vultures star, Botham gave wingers like Biki Mawela more space to pierce through the Swaziland defense. As if that was not enough, the Swaziland scrumhalf Wilson Dlamini, wearing jersey number 9, was sent to the sin bin in the 19th minute for a dubious tackle on the flying Botha.

Dlamini had to endure watching the Vultures scoring 19 points before he could get back on the pitch in the 45th minute. Halfway through to halftime, Mawela made sure he increases the gap by accurately scoring a conversion, making the score 33-0. A nice exchange between Steven Parry and Tshoganetso Katse made sure that Vultures went to half-time with a 59-0 lead. When many expected to see a rare comeback from Swaziland after half time, the Vultures became even more ruthless. They were very aggressive at the back as they capitalized on Swaziland’s poor handling to give Vultures the edge in the second half. Vultures increased the tally to 26 points in the second half to end the game at 87-0.


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