The Southern Kings scored five tries in their 38-28 win over the Glasgow Warriors at the Madibaz Stadium at the Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
The result marked the Kings’ first win this season and second in the competition overall. It also condemned Glasgow to a first defeat of the new campaign.
After an initial missed penalty attempt by Masixole Banda, the hosts stormed into a commanding 21-0 lead courtesy of quickfire tries to Yaw Penxe, Martin du Toit and Rudi van Rooyen.
The intensity and guile of those opening scores laid the platform for what was to come, as Deon Davids’ charges positively dominated proceedings in front of a crowd of 3 160 supporters.
Glasgow were rattled; making as many as eight handling errors inside the opening half hour alone. Their reckless style of play was pounced upon by the Kings, who were beginning to maintain a firm grip in the contest.
The Port Elizabethans were dealt a big blow when Penxe was yellow carded for a tip-tackle 15-minutes from the break, but some manful defending repelled the Warriors time and again.
Glasgow coach Dave Rennie’s frustration showed when he replaced George Turner and Greg Petersen for the more experienced duo of Fraser Brown and Rob Harley respectively, but they failed to make any meaningful impact as his side headed for the halftime oranges trailing by 24-points after a Banda-penalty.
The second-half sparked into life after a brilliant individual try from Harlon Klassen extended the Kings’ lead. A fantastic linebreak from the outside centre was finished off with a beautiful chip and chase to make it 31-0 with 30-minutes to play.
Tries to Nick Grigg and DTH van der Merwe narrowed the deficit, but it was too little too late as another du Toit score pushed them out to an unassailable lead.
Brown and van der Merwe managed late consolation efforts to earn their side a losing bonus-point, but it wasn’t enough to deny the Kings a famous victory.
Davids’ men will look to make it two wins in succession when they travel to Llanelli to take on the Scarlets at the Parc y Scarlets, while the Warriors will seek redemption when they host the Dragons at the Scotstoun Stadium in Round Five.
Tries – Penxe, du Toit (2), van Rooyen, H. Klaasen
Cons – Banda (5)
Pens – Banda
Yellow card – Penxe
Tries – Grigg, van der Merwe (2), Brown
Cons – Hastings (4)
15 Masixole Banda, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Harlon Klassen, 12 Berton Klassen, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Martin du Toit, 9 Rudi van Rooyen, 8 Ruaan Lerm, 7 Andisa Ntsila, 6 Henry Brown, 5 JC Astle, 4 Bobby de Wee, 3 Luvuyo Pupuma, 2 Michael Willemse (c), 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Subs: 16 Alandre van Rooyen, 17 Justin Forwood, 18 Martin Dreyer, 19 Stephan Greeff, 20 CJ Velleman, 21 Godlen Masimla, 22 Ntabeni Dukisa, Michael Botha.
15 Ruaridh Jackson, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Nick Grigg, 11 DTH van der Merwe, 10 Pete Horne, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Adam Ashe, 7 Chris Fusaro, 6 Ryan Wilson, 5 Scott Cummings, 4 Greg Petersen, 3 D’Arcy Rae, 2 George Turner, 1 Jamie Bhatti.
Subs: 16 Fraser Brown, 17 Alex Allan, 18 Kevin Bryce, 19 Rob Harley, 20 Callum Gibbins, 21 Ali Price, 22 Adam Hastings, 23 Robbie Nairn.