Young Sables set up epic finale

The Young Sables started off on the back foot with the former champions Namibia getting through the white wash to lead 0-5.

ZIMBABWE (17) . . . . . . . . . . . .35

NAMIBIA (11) . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23

THE Zimbabwe U20 rugby team set up a potentially pulsating winner-takes-all clash against Kenya in the Rugby Africa U-20 Basthes trophy following their thrilling win over Namibia yesterday.

Kenya booked a place in the grand finale after thumping Tunisia earlier in the day.

The Young Sables started off on the back foot with the former champions Namibia getting through the white wash to lead 0-5.

It, however, took a try from co-captain Tawananyasha Bwanya that was duly coveted by co-captain Benoni Nhekairo for Zimbabwe to move ahead.

Before the dust had even settled at 7-5, Edward Sigauke added another try for Zimbabwe with Nhekairo again making no mistake with the conversion, taking the hosts to 14-5. Nhekairo scored a penalty for Zimbabwe, while Namibia made their two kicks count as well taking the scores to 17-11 at half time in Zimbabwe's favour.

Sensing the danger posed by the opposition, Zimbabwe started the second half like a house on fire, scoring a quick try with Nhekairo extending his tally with a conversion.

Namibia, who had the backing of a small band of the Kenyan players, fought back with a converted try taking the match to 24-18.

At that stage the game became tense with scores drying out until Shammah Jackson's much needed try late into the match. Zimbabwe, however, missed the conversion before two late penalties made the game safe.

Meanwhile, National Foods Limited, through their Nutri-Active brand, recently unveiled a US$25 000 sponsorship for the Junior Sables.

"With such a significant financial commitment, National Foods Limited demonstrates their belief in the potential of the Zimbabwe Junior Sables rugby team and their commitment to empowering youths in sports. Moving forward, the company remains committed to supporting young talent whenever possible, ensuring a bright future for aspiring athletes in Zimbabwe," National Foods Limited said in a statement.

The statement added: "The sponsorship by National Foods Limited has had a profound impact on the Zimbabwe Junior Sables Rugby team. It has provided them with the means to compete at the highest level, while instilling a sense of pride and unity within the team. By investing in youth sports, National Foods contributes to the overall development of rugby in Zimbabwe and encourages aspiring young athletes to pursue their passion.

"It is anticipated that Nutri-Active will continue to play a pivotal role in the growth and success of the Zimbabwe Junior Sables Rugby team. Their ongoing support and commitment to nurturing young talent exemplify their dedication to the local community and the development of sports in Zimbabwe."


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