The Cell C Sharks lost 40-10 to the Vodacom Bulls at JONSSON KINGS PARK on a wet Saturday evening in a match where things just didn’t go right for the home team.
The Cell C Sharks were dealt a late blow with Beast Mtawarira pulling out of the match with a groin strain and while one player does not make a team, perhaps it was a portent of bad things to come.
Robert du Preez succeeded with an early 40m penalty but a few minutes later, the Vodacom Bulls, with penalty advantage, chipped over the defence for a good run onto the ball and the opening try of the game.
Two minutes later, a grubber kick was on point and Warrick Gelant ran onto the ball and scored his second try. The Conversion was good and the visitors held a 14-3 lead.
Although we were able to gain a measure of possession following the early advantage to the visitors, we were unable to convert that into points before the Vodacom Bulls exploited a driving maul for the third try, this time to hooker Adrian Strauss for a 21-3 lead after 25 minutes of play.
Although the Vodacom Bulls were quite happy to concede penalty after penalty, we were unable to make it count before Andre Esterhuizen powered over from first phase ball off an attacking lineout as he showed his immense strength for the important try just before half-time.
The rain came bucketing down in the second half and with that came more woes as the Vodacom Bulls earned a penalty try and we lost Thomas du Toit to a yellow card after we had conceded successive penalties.
The second half never really rose to any great heights, the wet ball making handling difficult and we battled to build territorial advantage.
The Vodacom Bulls had the last word, Gelant latching onto a loose ball in the midfield, kicking it ahead and scoring his third try before we turned over possession in our 22 for a try out wide.
After the two wonderful matches in New Zealand, this was an inexplicable result.