WINDHOEK, 22 JUL – UNAM Rugby Club continued their dominance of Namibian club rugby when they beat Wanderers 39-35 to finish top of the Premier League log standing ahead of next weekend’s semi-finals.
UNAM, who have won the league title for the last three years in a row, came from behind to beat their arch-rival Wanderers who became the first club this year to inflict a defeat on them, ending their three-year unbeaten streak in the process.
The university team once again showed their intentions to retain their trophy after a dominant display on Saturday.
UNAM will now have to beat United in the semi-finals on Saturday for a place in the final that will be contested in August.
Despite their narrow defeat against UNAM, Pioneers Park-based Wanderers also managed to book a spot in the semi-finals, where they will clash with Khomasdal-based Western Suburbs, whom they failed to defeat in their last two clashes this season.
To defeat Wanderers on Saturday UNAM scored five tries to Wanderers’ four.
Denver Murorua added 14 points with the boot from four conversions and two penalties while Bradley Klazen, Obert Nortje, Rheinhardt Carelse, Helarius Kisting and Donavan Kandjii all scored tries.
For Wanderers, Janry du Toit scored two tries while Stef Botha and Adriaan Booysen had one each. Rudie Pretorius added two conversions and two penalties.
The match played in Rehoboth between Western Suburbs and Rehoboth on Saturday ended 33-19 in Suburbs’ favour.
With the league’s 14 matches completed, UNAM finished top with 57 points, Suburbs second on 44 points, Wanderers third with 43 points and United fourth with 40 points.
Kudu missed out on the semi-finals play-off after finishing fifth with 37 points and Rehoboth finished sixth with 20 points and bottom of the log is Reho Falcon, who failed to win a game for the entire season but managed to collect one bonus point.
Speaking to the media after their match, UNAM coach Johan Diergaardt said he was happy with his team’s performance throughout the season despite the league season being tougher than before.
“The semi-finals are next week and I am positive we still have the squad that can win us those games, even if we lose some players to the national team camp.
“This season was really tough compared to the past two, where we won the league without losing a game,” said Diergaardt.