Young Sables miss out on World Rugby U20
THE Young Sables have missed out on next year’s World Rugby Under-20 Trophy after losing 29-42 to Namibia in the final of the African qualifier in Windhoek on Saturday.
Zimbabwe, led by wing Sam Phiri, had earlier come from 0-14 down to go into the break leading 17-14.
Coach Farai Mahari’s lads, however, could not sustain the hosts’ pressure in the second half in which they conceded 28 points and only managed to score 12. At one stage in the second half, Zimbabwe led Namibia 29-28, but failed to contain the home team’s attack.
The Young Sables’ points consisted of four tries, three conversions and a penalty goal.
It is the second year running that Zimbabwe Under20 have lost out to Namibia in the final of the African qualifier.
In 2015 under the guidance of Brendon Brider, the Young Sables lost 32-34 in extra time at St George’s College in Harare. Luckily, Zimbabwe won the right to host the tournament, which was staged at Harare Sports Club at the end of April during which the Young Sables finished as the worst side in the eight-team competition after losing all their four matches.
For them to book a place in Saturday’s final, Zimbabwe edged Kenya 27-26 on Wednesday last week.
Unlike their seniors, who were relegated from Division 1A, the Young Sables’ victory over Kenya ensured they remain in the elite group whose winner qualifies for the World Rugby Under-20 Trophy. — @ Mdawini_29