IRB Tbilisi Cup 2013. SA Presidents XV are the winners



South Africa President’s XV  defeat Georgia to win Tbilisi Cup


South Africa President’s XV won the inaugural Tbilisi Cup with a hard fought win over a spirited Georgian outfit.


The South African’s scored two tries to one to complete a hatrick of victories and earn the right to lift the Tbilisi Cup.


The first half of this match was the most physical contest of the tournament. It is not often you see a South African side out muscled but that was certainly the case early on. 


The Georgians line speed in defence was making life difficult for the South Africa President’s XV back division. Nevertheless, South African President’s XV took an early 6-0 lead thanks to two well struck penalties by Carl Bezuidenhout.


The next 20 minutes belonged to the home side. Beka Tsiklauri kicked a difficult long range penalty to cut the deficit to three points before the Georgian pack stamped their authority on the match. 


They set up a driving maul fifteen metres out from the South Africa goal line and drove all the way to the try line with Levan Chilachava coming up with the try that was greeted by rapturous applause by the home crowd.  Tsiklauri converted to put the Lelos in front.


Bezuidenhout  and Tsiklauri traded penalties before Rosko Specman came off his wing and glided through the hosts defence to put his side back in front. Bezuidenhout kicked the resulting conversion to make it 16-13 to South Africa President’s XV at half time.


The home side were buoyed by having the wind at their backs for the second half and quickly levelled the scores with a third penalty for winger, Tsiklauri.


South Africa President’s XV then began to control the tempo of the match. They didn’t have a huge amount of possession in the Georgian 22, but what they did have they made use of. Eduan van der Walt bundled his way over the line for his side’s second try to ensure his side won the match and the tournament.

Georgia Coach, Milton Haig was impressed with the desire his team showed. He said: “I was pleased with the commitment the boys showed. I know there were a lot of people that thought we would lose convincingly today and that hasn’t happened.  The players went out there and equipped themselves really well.


“The lineout was a little inaccurate but you have to give South Africa credit for that too. You can’t win these types of games if you don’t get your set piece right so we will certainly go back and have a look at that.”



Jimmy Stonehouse, the victorious South Africa President’s XV Coach, said: “We are delighted to get the victory and win the tournament overall. It was a physical battle and I was quite impressed with the Georgian performance. The tournament has been an excellent developmental tool for our players and will be fantastic for their progression as players.”


Emerging Ireland claim victory over Uruguay in try fest


Emerging Ireland scored six tries to Uruguay’s five to win the final match of the Tbilisi Cup 42-33 in the heat of the Georgian capital city.


The Irish made a lively start to the match and scored two tries in the opening 10 minutes. Tiernan O’Halloran finished off a great team try to get the scoreboard rolling on four minutes before fly half Ian Keatley crossed for a try on nine minutes. The young fly half added both conversions to see Emerging Ireland 14-0 ahead.


Uruguay fought back and scored their first try of the tournament with number 8, Juan Gaminara, diving over in the corner after a fantastic forward pack effort. Jeronimo Etcheverry converted from out wide to cut the Irish lead to seven points.


Emerging Ireland were throwing the ball around and scored a third try when Ian Keatley sold the Uruguayans a dummy and touched down for his second try. He converted to make it 21-7. That is how it remained until half time.


Emerging Ireland started the second half the same way they started the first and scored their bonus point try on 43 minutes with Niall Morris intercepting the ball to run in from 50 metres for his first try of the tournament.


The Leicester winger was in for his second five minutes later darting past six defenders to dot down next to the posts. Keatley kept up his impeccable kicking display to make it 35-7.


The Uruguayans dominated the final half an hour and played some scintillating rugby. The width that had been lacking from their attacking play in the first two matches was very evident in the last 30 minutes.  Rodrigo Espiga and German Albanell crossed for tries to bring the South Americans back into the contest.


In between the two Uruguay tries, Emerging Ireland replacement hooker, Niall Annett, crossed for a well worked try off the line-out.


Uruguay finished with a flurry of tries to sign off the tournament with some great rugby. Alberto Roman and then Juan De Freitas crossed to make the final score Emerging Ireland 42 Uruguay 33.


Uruguay Coach Pablo Lemoine was happy with his side’s second half performance but was disappointed that they did not make the most of the chances they had. He said: “I was extremely happy with our second half display. In the first half we watched Ireland play and made mistakes that allowed them to take control of the game.


“It was a good game but we were hoping for a better result. We are solid in certain areas of the game but need to work on other areas. We know what these areas are and will work hard on them for our next matches.”


Emerging Ireland Coach, Allen Clark, said: “We were really good for 50 minutes, scored some fantastic tries, but in the last 3o (minutes) we were second best. We have to learn the lessons from that. You cannot make the mistakes we made and expect the opposition not to score against you. Overall I am pleased for the lads in getting the win, we have to look at the positives but also learn from where we need to improve.”

Georgian time


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