Welwitschias score 15 tries to thrash Senegal… 2019 World Cup remains target

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Otniel Hembapu

Windhoek-Namibia’s senior rugby side, the Welwitschias, on Saturday took charge of proceedings atop the Africa Gold Cup log after they walloped visiting Senegal 95-0 at the Hage Geingob Stadium in the capital in their second match of the continental showpiece.

Going into Saturday’s match, the Namibians were firm favourites to emerge as winners, especially considering their last performance during their victorious opening Africa Gold Cup match against Tunisia – a match they won 53-7.

On Saturday, the Welwitschias – who are the Africa Gold Cup defending champions – delivered an immaculate performance to waltz past a hapless Senegal, scoring 15 unanswered tries and 10 conversions as they led 36-0 at halftime. They dominated throughout to win the match 95-0 despite being 14 men due to Louis van der Westhuizen’s red card early in the first half.

With the victory, Namibia now lead the log with 10 points, three points ahead of Kenya who defeated Tunisia 100-10 in Nairobi also on Saturday. Namibia’s next match is against Zimbabwe on Saturday, July 15 also at the Hage Geingob Stadium in the capital.

The Rugby Africa Gold Cup, which serves as 2019 World Cup qualifiers, features Namibia, Kenya, Senegal, Tunisia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Namibia, who are a tier-two nation in the World Rugby tier system and have participated in five World Cups since their first appearance in 1999, are hot favourites to qualify again.

The Gold Cup is played on a round robin basis until August 5, with the winner not only being crowned Gold Cup winner but also qualify for the World Cup. The 2019 Rugby World Cup takes place in Japan from September 20 to November 2 and will be played across 12 venues.

Namibia’s scorers: Rohan Kitshoff scored four tries while Lesley Klim bagged a brace with Adriaan Booysen, Louis van der Westhuizen, AJ De Klerk, Justin Newman, JG Greyling, Thomasau Forbes, Johann Tromp, Theuns Kotze and Darryl de la Harpe also getting on target.

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