Nations Cup Results: France vs South Africa Match Report

Wendy YoungCorrespondent IAugust 11, 2009

ST. ALBERT, CANADA - AUGUST 31:  Zandile Nojoko #15 of Team South Africa (R) looks to make a pass while being tackled by Lisa Fiaola #13 of Team Australia (L) during their match on day one of the Women's Rugby World Cup 2006 on August 31, 2006 at St. Albert Rugby Football Club in St. Albert, Alberta, Canada. Australia defeated South Africa by a score of 68-12. (Photo by Tim Smith/Getty Images)

South Africa nearly claimed the opening win of the 2009 Women’s Nations Cup before French substitute Manon Andre was able to draw level 17-17 with less than a minute to play.

An impressive 12 point effort by South African fly half Zandile Nojoko combined with the opening try by Marilize Jordaan seemed to be enough as France struggled to hold off some slicing runs by their southern hemisphere opponents.

“We had a real lack of possession,” French Head Coach Christian Galionnier said after the match. “We’re not especially fast and we dropped far too many balls.”

As the French struggled to find their composure a little luck fell on their side as South African substitute Phumeza Gadu was sin binned for diving in at a ruck with five minutes to play.

The player advantage made the difference according to Galionnier as his side was given some breathing room from the powerful Boks’ pack.

“It was much easier for our forwards after the yellow,” he said before adding, “The sin binning then opened the field up for our backs and we were able to score.”

South African winger Marilize Jordaan was first to open the scoring as both sides were gridlocked through much of the opening half. Nojoko kicked the conversion for the early 7-0 lead before France came driving back.

The entire blue pack mauled their way towards the try line to narrow the lead 7-5 and Aurelie Bailon converted to tie the match 7-7.

South Africa held much of the possession as time wore on and it took a thirty metre try-scoring Nojoko run followed up by her own conversion for them to retake the lead 14-7.

The French were quick to capitalize on South Africa’s mistakes and a counter-attacking run by Babrile Mutis narrowed the lead by two points as the clock wore down.

Nojoko’s penalty kick from just inside the touch line padded the South African lead with another three points as they had their first 2009 Nations Cup win in sight.

Despite dominating the set pieces for much of the match, South Africa’s fatigue set in as poor challenges at the break down were eventually penalized with the crucial sin binning of Gadu.

France had their opportunities and after several phases of grinding pick and drive tactics, Manon Andre eventually barreled through to tie the match 17-17.

South Africa Roster
1 Cebisa Kula
2 Nosipho Poswa
3 Ramona Brown
4 Namhla Siyolo
5 Dolly Mavumengwana
6 Nomatamsanqa Falenia
7 Lamla Momoti
8 Mandisa Williams
9 Saloma Booysen
10 Zandile Nojoko
11 Natasha Hofmeester
12 Yolanda Meiring
13 Lorinda Brown
14 Marilize Jordaan
15 Aimee Barrett
16 Donna Sidumbu
17 Portia Jonga
18 Wendy Khumalo
19 Nombulelo Mayongo
20 Fundiswa Plaatjie
21 Phumeza Gadu
22 Claudio Thompson

France Roster
1. Stepahanie Loyer
2. Laetitia Salles
3. Sandrine Legros
4. Sandra Rabier
5. Cyrielle Bouisset
6. Amandine Vaupre
7. Marie Charlotte Hebel
8. Gabrielle Mutis
9. Marie Alic Yahe
10. Aurelie Bailon
11. Aurelia Cellier
12. Sandrine Agricole
13. Lucille Godiveau
14. Celine Allainmat
15. Caroline Ladagnous
16. Audrey Noguera
17. Nadege Labbey
18. Andre Manon
19. Lucie Canal
20. Jennifer Troncy
21. Christelle Le Duff
22. Elodie Poublan

It is GREAT news to hear that Canada will be live broadcasting almost all of the Nations Cup games via their Ustream channel! You can either view the video here or go directly to the Ustream site here. Each match will also be archived and available at Ustream.

For full rosters and schedule of Nations Cup 2009, go here.

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