The men from Port Elizabeth were reduced to 14 men after only 13 minutes of play as Pieter Scholtz (prop) received a red card for making contact with an opponent’s neck while carrying the ball on attack.

Their replacement tighthead prop, De-Jay Terblanche, then suffered an injury shortly before the fourth quarter, which left them with no cover in the position, resulting in the team having to play with 13 men.

Things got worse in the 67th minute as lock Aston Fortuin received a yellow card for collapsing a maul, and this saw them being forced to play with 12 men for 10 minutes, paving the way for a nine-try romp by Edinburgh.

The first half was thrilling despite the Isuzu Southern Kings' early red card, with both teams running hard at one another on attack and standing tall on defence, and it showed on the scoreboard with Edinburgh holding a slender 19-13 lead at the break.

With player numbers counting against the visitors in the second half, Edinburgh predictably ran riot on attack, and finished the match with nine tries to only two.

The Isuzu Southern Kings showed their intent from the outset and they were rewarded as early as the 11th minute with Erich Cronje (winger) touching down after gathering a stunning grubber.

They were dealt a massive blow two minutes later when Scholtz received his marching orders, and the hosts took advantage of this with Mike Willemse (hooker) – a former Isuzu Southern Kings captain – scoring their first try after breaking away from a dominant rolling maul.

This was cancelled out by the visitors’ flyhalf, JT Jackson, who slotted a penalty goal. But back-to-back tries by Edinburgh’s Duhan van der Merwe (winger) and Matt Scott (centre), from exciting attacking play, pushed them 19-8 ahead.

Jackson, however, had the final say on the stroke of halftime as he dived over in the corner from a sharp pass following a rolling maul to enter the break six points down.

Edinburgh came out firing when play resumed with James Johnstone (centre) scoring their bonus-point try as he dashed ahead with a clear tryline in sight.

The Isuzu Southern Kings’ hopes of hanging in despite the red card, however, were dented heavily soon after as Terblanche left the field injured, and they had to rely on 13 men to do the job with a bit more than 20 minutes left on the clock.

Edinburgh were awarded a penalty try soon after for the Isuzu Southern Kings’ collapsing a maul, and the side paid a high price with Fortuin being sent to the sin-bin, leaving them with 12 players.

This paved the way for a late charge by Edinburgh in which Eroni Sau (winger), Dave Cherry (replacement hooker), Charlie Shiel (replacement scrumhalf), and Mark Bennett (replacement centre) navigated their way to the tryline within 12 minutes, and this sealed a 61-13 victory for the team.


Edinburgh 61 (19) – Tries: Mike Willemse, Duhan van der Merwe, Matt Scott, James Johnstone, Penalty Try, Eroni Sau, Dave Cherry, Charlie Shiel, Mark Bennett. Conversions: Jaco van der Walt (7).  

Isuzu Southern Kings 13 (13) – Tries: Erich Cronje, JT Jackson. Penalty goal: Jackson.